Anemia is a common complication for patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and is associated with cardiovascular comorbidities and reduced quality of life. The incidence of anemia increases as kidney function declines and affects approximately 32% of Japanese patients with stage 3-5 CKD. This review examined the current literature on anemia in CKD patients in Japan to provide an overview of the burden of anemia in CKD. Medline, Embase, and Igaku Chuo Zasshi databases were searched to identify relevant manuscripts and abstracts published from 2004 onward. The population included CKD patients with anemia, and the outcomes of interest were epidemiology, economic, humanistic, and treatment patterns. Observational studies, database analysis, and economic evaluation studies were included in the analysis. A total of 1151 references were identified, and 50 were eligible for final review. Economic burden was reported in most studies (n = 37) followed by treatment patterns (n = 26), and epidemiological (n = 25) and humanistic (n = 1) burdens. Prevalence of anemia varied largely (0-95%) based on the different definitions of anemia, and increased with CKD severity. Higher mortality was associated with erythropoiesis-stimulating agent (ESA) resistance and lower hemoglobin levels among patients treated with ESA. Drug dosage was the most reported economic burden (n = 33), followed by medical, and non-medical outcomes. Costs associated with anemia were considerable and depended on dialysis status and ESA treatment. Only one study reported data on quality of life, suggesting that further investigation on the humanistic burden of anemia in CKD is needed.