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      Relationship of Urine Output to Dialysis Initiation and Mortality in Acute Renal Failure

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          Background: A non-oliguric state is considered a good prognostic indicator in acute renal failure (ARF), and may lead to withholding renal replacement therapy in anticipation of recovery. The present study explores the relationship between urine volume and the start of dialysis and hospital mortality in patients with ARF. Methods: In a non-concurrent cohort of patients with ARF treated exclusively with intermittent hemodialysis (IHD), demographic, clinical and laboratory characteristics were collected at the time of the first nephrology consultation and at the start of dialysis. Multiple linear and logistic regression analyses were used to identify factors associated with the time to initiation of dialysis and hospital mortality, respectively. Results: Urine volume correlated with the time from admission to start of dialysis (r = 0.60; p < 0.001). Higher urine volume, lower serum creatinine and lower APACHE II score were independently associated with increased time from admission to start of dialysis. Hospital mortality was independently associated with a higher urine volume (odds ratio, OR 3.8, 95% confidence interval, CI, 1.1–12.8, p = 0.03), a higher MOF score (OR 4.9, 95% CI 1.1–21.6, p = 0.03) and a higher number of dialysis treatments performed in the 1st week (OR 3.7, 95% CI 1.2–11.3, p = 0.03). Conclusions: Among patients with ARF requiring IHD, increased urine output is associated with higher mortality. This observation may reflect physician bias toward later initiation of dialysis in non-oliguric ARF. Further research is needed to help identify patients with non-oliguric ARF who require early dialytic support.

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          Diuretics, mortality, and nonrecovery of renal function in acute renal failure.

          Acute renal failure is associated with high mortality and morbidity. Diuretic agents continue to be used in this setting despite a lack of evidence supporting their benefit. To determine whether the use of diuretics is associated with adverse or favorable outcomes in critically ill patients with acute renal failure. Cohort study conducted from October 1989 to September 1995. A total of 552 patients with acute renal failure in intensive care units at 4 academic medical centers affiliated with the University of California. Patients were categorized by the use of diuretics on the day of nephrology consultation and, in companion analyses, by diuretic use at any time during the first week following consultation. All-cause hospital mortality, nonrecovery of renal function, and the combined outcome of death or nonrecovery. Diuretics were used in 326 patients (59%) at the time of nephrology consultation. Patients treated with diuretics on or before the day of consultation were older and more likely to have a history of congestive heart failure, nephrotoxic (rather than ischemic or multifactorial) origin of acute renal failure, acute respiratory failure, and lower serum urea nitrogen concentrations. With adjustment for relevant covariates and propensity scores, diuretic use was associated with a significant increase in the risk of death or nonrecovery of renal function (odds ratio, 1.77; 95% confidence interval, 1.14-2.76). The risk was magnified (odds ratio, 3.12; 95% confidence interval, 1.73-5.62) when patients who died within the first week following consultation were excluded. The increased risk was borne largely by patients who were relatively unresponsive to diuretics. The use of diuretics in critically ill patients with acute renal failure was associated with an increased risk of death and nonrecovery of renal function. Although observational data prohibit causal inference, it is unlikely that diuretics afford any material benefit in this clinical setting. In the absence of compelling contradictory data from a randomized, blinded clinical trial, the widespread use of diuretics in critically ill patients with acute renal failure should be discouraged.
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            Refining predictive models in critically ill patients with acute renal failure.

            Mortality rates in acute renal failure remain extremely high, and risk-adjustment tools are needed for quality improvement initiatives and design (stratification) and analysis of clinical trials. A total of 605 patients with acute renal failure in the intensive care unit during 1989-1995 were evaluated, and demographic, historical, laboratory, and physiologic variables were linked with in-hospital death rates using multivariable logistic regression. Three hundred and fourteen (51.9%) patients died in-hospital. The following variables were significantly associated with in-hospital death: age (odds ratio [OR], 1.02 per yr), male gender (OR, 2.36), respiratory (OR, 2.62), liver (OR, 3.06), and hematologic failure (OR, 3.40), creatinine (OR, 0.71 per mg/dl), blood urea nitrogen (OR, 1.02 per mg/dl), log urine output (OR, 0.64 per log ml/d), and heart rate (OR, 1.01 per beat/min). The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.83, indicating good model discrimination. The model was superior in all performance metrics to six generic and four acute renal failure-specific predictive models. A disease-specific severity of illness equation was developed using routinely available and specific clinical variables. Cross-validation of the model and additional bedside experience will be needed before it can be effectively applied across centers, particularly in the context of clinical trials.
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              Outcomes research in acute renal failure.

              Acute renal failure (ARF) is associated with morbidity and mortality in excess of 50% in the intensive care unit (ICU) setting. A variety of outcome measures have been described in published reports of ARF, however, the studies often do not distinguish between clinical outcomes and surrogate endpoints. Multiple factors can influence these outcomes, including variations in practice. It is important to be aware of the potential effects of these factors when clinical trials are planned and executed for ARF patients. For any intervention trial, knowledge of the natural history of the disease and process of care informs the design and conduct of the trial. Standardization of a definition for ARF and of the criteria for initiation, frequency, duration, and withdrawal of dialysis support would be of great benefit. This article provides a critical appraisal of outcomes research in ARF and describes an approach for selecting appropriate endpoints for future clinical research in ARF.

                Author and article information

                Nephron Clin Pract
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                February 2005
                14 January 2005
                : 99
                : 2
                : c56-c60
                Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, aTufts-New England Medical Center, and bCaritas-St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, Boston, Mass., USA
                83134 Nephron Clin Pract 2005;99:c56–c60
                © 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Figures: 1, Tables: 3, References: 12, Pages: 1
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