Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study Questions Impact Of Hemoglobin Variations On Mortality In Dialysis Patients

Date:
December 10, 2007
Source:
American Society of Nephrology
Summary:
For patients with dialysis-related anemia, the risk of death is increased when hemoglobin levels remain persistently low over a period several months -- not necessarily when they fluctuate over time, according to a new study.

For patients with dialysis-related anemia, the risk of death is increased when hemoglobin levels remain persistently low over a period several months--not necessarily when they fluctuate over time, according to a new study.

Related Articles


"Our results show that the effect of hemoglobin variability on mortality, beyond the absolute level of hemoglobin, may not confer much additional risk, after adjusting for other illnesses and hospitalizations," comments David T. Gilbertson, Ph.D., of the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation, Minneapolis, Minn.

Dr. Gilbertson and colleagues used data on nearly 160,000 dialysis patients to analyze the effects of variations in hemoglobin level on the risk of death. Patterns of hemoglobin variability during the first six months of 2004 were analyzed and compared with mortality rates over the subsequent six months.

Hemoglobin is the oxygen-carrying compound in the blood. Anemia, or low hemoglobin levels, is one of the most frequent complications of kidney failure and is associated with an increased risk of death in dialysis patients. Treatment including erythropoietin and intravenous iron has been a major advance in the management of kidney failure-related anemia, yet low blood counts and variation in hemoglobin levels continue to be a problem for many dialysis patients.

In the study, patients who developed low hemoglobin levels during the monitoring period were at increased risk of death. This was true both for patients with temporary reductions in hemoglobin and those whose hemoglobin level was persistently low. This risk was considerably greater than any risk associated with fluctuations in hemoglobin levels.

On further analysis, the key risk factor seemed to be the amount of time spent with a low hemoglobin level--not the hemoglobin variations themselves. Patients who spent three months or longer with low hemoglobin levels had the highest mortality rates.

"A number of research groups have shown that variability of hemoglobin levels is very common in patients receiving dialysis for end-stage renal disease," says Dr. Gilbertson. "Low hemoglobin levels, which are an indication of anemia, have been shown to be associated with poor outcomes. It is relatively unknown whether fluctuations in hemoglobin levels add additional risk." If so, then more intensive treatment might be needed to keep hemoglobin levels within a relatively narrow range.

"Our results suggest that fluctuations in hemoglobin levels probably do not add much to the mortality risk for patients with dialysis-related anemia," Dr. Gilbertson concludes. "Low hemoglobin levels show significantly greater associations with increased risk of death than fluctuations in hemoglobin levels." More research will be needed to evaluate the causes of variations in hemoglobin levels, including what proportion of the variability is under the control of doctors and dialysis centers.

This study was supported by a research contract from Amgen, Inc., Thousand Oaks, Calif. The contract provides for the investigators of the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation to have the final determination of the content of this publication. The following study authors have received consulting fees from Amgen: David T. Gilbertson, Robert N. Foley, and Allan J. Collins. Study author Brian D. Bradbury works in the Department of Epidemiology at Amgen, Inc.

The study entitled, "Hemoglobin Level Variability: Associations with Mortality" is available online at the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology website and in print in the January issue.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society of Nephrology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society of Nephrology. "Study Questions Impact Of Hemoglobin Variations On Mortality In Dialysis Patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071205105005.htm>.
American Society of Nephrology. (2007, December 10). Study Questions Impact Of Hemoglobin Variations On Mortality In Dialysis Patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071205105005.htm
American Society of Nephrology. "Study Questions Impact Of Hemoglobin Variations On Mortality In Dialysis Patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071205105005.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins