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      Alteration of Heart Rate Variability Parameters in Nondiabetic Hemodialysis Patients


      American Journal of Nephrology

      S. Karger AG

      Chronic renal failure, Heart rate variability, Hemodialysis

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          Objective: We attempt to identify heart rate variability (HRV) components and decide whether or not such components are more sensitive to the hemodialysis (HD) process by excluding the presence of comorbid conditions known to affect HRV. Methods: It was a prospective cohort study of factors associated with HRV. Thirty-five HD patients were admitted to the study. The research was divided into three phases. During the first phase, baseline Holter and blood pressure recordings were carried out. Then in the second phase, the patients were admitted for HD with continuous Holter and blood pressure recording. The third phase was after HD with continuous Holter and blood pressure recording. The frequency and time domain analyses of HRV were carried out by an independent, blinded investigator. Plasma Na<sup>+</sup>, K<sup>+</sup>, ionized Ca, hemoglobin, serum creatinine and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) were checked 1 h before and 2 h after HD. Results: After HD, the serum creatinine and BUN were obviously reduced (p < 0.01), which was also expressed by fractional urea clearance (K<sub>t</sub>/V; 1.55 ± 0.25), which means efficient HD. Standard deviation of all RR intervals and low-frequency/high-frequency (LF/HF) ratio were reduced significantly (p < 0.05) at the ‘HD for 3 h’ time point while the blood pressure levels were relatively stable during the HD process. The ultrafiltration rate and K<sub>t</sub>/V appeared to be the main determinants of the LF/HF ratio in HD. In our cases, the LF/HF ratio positively correlated with K<sub>t</sub>/V and negatively correlated with ultrafiltration volume. Conclusion: Our study suggested a shift in sympathovagal balance toward sympathetic activation during the HD process. Sympathetic overactivity is positively correlated with the ultrafiltration rate, and negatively correlated with the K<sub>t</sub>/V which means that the HD process itself affects HRV parameters indeed.

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          Most cited references 13

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          Sympathetic overactivity in patients with chronic renal failure.

          Hypertension is a frequent complication of chronic renal failure, but its causes are not fully understood. There is indirect evidence that increased activity of the sympathetic nervous system might contribute to hypertension in patients with end-stage renal disease, but sympathetic-nerve discharge has not been measured directly in patients or animals with chronic renal failure. We recorded the rate of postganglionic sympathetic-nerve discharge to the blood vessels in skeletal muscle by means of microelectrodes inserted into the peroneal nerve in 18 patients with native kidneys who were undergoing long-term treatment with hemodialysis (of whom 14 had hypertension), 5 patients receiving hemodialysis who had undergone bilateral nephrectomy (of whom 1 had hypertension), and 11 normal subjects. RESULTS. The mean (+/- SE) rate of sympathetic-nerve discharge was 2.5 times higher in the patients receiving hemodialysis who had not undergone nephrectomy than in the normal subjects (58 +/- 3 vs. 23 +/- 3 bursts per minute, P < 0.01). In contrast, the rate of sympathetic-nerve discharge was similar in the patients receiving hemodialysis who had undergone bilateral nephrectomy (21 +/- 6 bursts per minute) and the normal subjects. The rate of sympathetic-nerve discharge in the patients receiving hemodialysis who had not undergone nephrectomy was also significantly higher (P < 0.01) than that in the patients with bilateral nephrectomy, and it was accompanied in the former group by higher values for vascular resistance in the calf (45 +/- 4 vs. 22 +/- 4 units, P < 0.05) and mean arterial pressure (106 +/- 4 vs. 76 +/- 14 mm Hg, P < 0.05). The rate of sympathetic-nerve discharge was not correlated with either plasma norepinephrine concentrations or plasma renin activity. Chronic renal failure may be accompanied by reversible sympathetic activation, which appears to be mediated by an afferent signal arising in the failing kidneys.
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            ESRD patient mortality with adjustment for comorbid conditions in Lombardy (Italy) versus the United States.

            The present study evaluated end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patient survival in Lombardy, Italy, and the United States (U.S.) using data from two registries, the Lombardy Dialysis and Transplant Registry (RLDT) and the U.S. Renal Data System (USRDS), respectively. For this purpose, 4,196 white patients (2,900 from the USRDS Case Mix Severity Study and all 1296 from RLDT) who started renal replacement therapy in 1986 and 1987 were studied. Compared to Lombardy patients, those in the USA were significantly older (mean age 59.9 +/- 16.4 vs. 55.9 +/- 14.7 years), had a lower proportion of males (53.7 vs. 62.1%), a greater proportion with diabetic nephropathy (29.9 vs. 9.7%) and a significantly greater proportion of patients with the recorded comorbid conditions (heart disease, peripheral vascular disease, cirrhosis, cachexia, malignancy). U.S. patients were less frequently treated with peritoneal dialysis (PD) by day 30 of ESRD (21.2 vs. 30.7). Survival was compared in the Cox proportional hazard regression model, using age, sex, comorbid conditions and early modality of treatment as explanatory covariates. Overall, 48% of the 4196 patients died during the 48 to 72 months follow-up to 12/31/91. Per 100 patient-years the gross death rate for USRDS patients was 28.7 compared to 13.0 of RLDT patients. The unadjusted death relative risk for RLDT was 0.439, that is, 56% lower death rate compared to USRDS patients. Age, sex, diabetic status, each of the recorded comorbid conditions and treatment modality were significantly related to survival and included in the model. The Cox cumulative survival adjusted for all these explanatory covariates survival was for U.S. patients 84.4% at one year, 67.0% at two years and 33.4% at five years, and for RLDT patients 88.3% at one year, 75.9% at two years and 45.9% at five years. The relative mortality risk (RR) for the patients treated in Lombardy adjusted for all the reported covariates was 29% lower than for US patients (RR = 0.71; P < 0.0001). This comparative risk varied significantly by age (P < 0.0001) and was 65 percent lower for Lombardy compared to U.S. patients in the age range 25 to 44 years (RR = 0.35) and about 20% lower for patients over age 65 years (RR = 0.80). This relative risk was mainly related to hemodialysis and was not statistically significant for PD patients. The observed lower mortality risk in Lombardy was less pronounced when adjusted for demographic and comorbid covariates, but was still large and therefore suggests the need for further studies regarding treatment related factors and unmeasured patient factors, particularly in hemodialysis patients.
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              Predictors of haemodynamic instability and heart rate variability during haemodialysis.

              The pathogenesis of haemodialysis-induced hypotension is multifactorial and may include autonomic nervous system dysfunction. The present study was undertaken to (i) determine heart rate variability (HRV) in chronic haemodialysis patients without and with haemodynamic instability (hypotension-prone) during ultrafiltration and (ii) identify patients at risk and the predictors of dialysis-related hypotension. HRV was evaluated in 56 chronic haemodialysis patients without (stable; n = 27) and with symptomatic hypotension episodes (unstable; n = 29) during daytime, haemodialysis and night-time periods. Logistic regression analysis was performed in a model that included clinical and biochemical data and HRV measurements. HRV was significantly reduced in haemodynamically unstable as compared with the stable patients. LF/HF ratio, an index representative of sympathovagal balance, was significantly lower in unstable patients, especially in those with ischaemic heart disease and diabetes mellitus. In a logistic regression model including clinical data and HRV measurements, ischaemic heart disease and left ventricular systolic dysfunction were found to be the main predictors of haemodynamic instability. These data suggest that haemodynamic instability is strongly associated with a decreased HRV and an impaired sympathovagal balance, suggesting disturbed autonomic control in uraemic patients with cardiac damage. Patients with ischaemic heart disease, reduced left ventricular systolic function and decreased HRV may be at the highest risk to be haemodynamically unstable during haemodialysis. The role of early detection and treatment of ischaemic heart disease in preventing symptomatic hypotensive episodes in these patients remains to be determined.

                Author and article information

                Am J Nephrol
                American Journal of Nephrology
                S. Karger AG
                March 2007
                24 January 2007
                : 27
                : 1
                : 63-69
                Jilin Chinese Medical Hospital, Department of Nephrology, Changchun City, China
                99013 Am J Nephrol 2007;27:63–69
                © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 3, References: 20, Pages: 7
                Self URI (application/pdf): https://www.karger.com/Article/Pdf/99013
                Original Report: Patient-Oriented, Translational Research

                Cardiovascular Medicine, Nephrology

                Hemodialysis, Heart rate variability, Chronic renal failure


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