High-flux hemodialysis prolongs kidney patients’ survival

February 21st, 2009 - 2:55 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Feb 21 (IANS) High-flux hemodialysis, which removes toxins of greater molecular size, reduces the risk of premature death in patients with chronic kidney disease or CKD, according to a study.
In patients with CKD, toxins accumulate in the blood because the kidneys lose their ability to eliminate these substances sufficiently.

CKD patients undergo either high-flux or low-flux hemodialysis to clear these toxins from the body (high-flux membranes have larger pores that allow for the removal of toxins of greater molecular size).

While studies have indicated that treatment with high-flux hemodialysis improved survival, the true potential of this treatment on prolonging life has not been clearly determined.

Francesco Locatelli, a doctor at A. Manzoni Hospital, Lecco, Italy, and his colleagues in eight European countries conducted a clinical trial to investigate the effect of high-flux hemodialysis on patient survival.

In a randomised clinical trial called the ‘membrane permeability outcome (MPO) study, they enrolled 738 hemodialysis patients and assigned them to either low-flux or high-flux hemodialysis, said a release of the American Society of Nehprology.

Patients were followed for 3 to 7.5 years. In the entire study group, the researchers did not detect a significant survival benefit with either high-flux or low-flux hemodialysis, but the use of high-flux membranes conferred a significant survival benefit in higher-risk patients. In addition, patients with diabetes showed a survival benefit with high-flux dialysis.

These findings could lead to potentially valuable clinical benefits for patients with CKD.

These findings will appear in the March issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology (JASN).

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