Background: Hemodialysis (HD) patients are immunocompromised, and they have been shown to react suboptimally to recommended vaccinations. Advances in dialysis therapy and other supportive measures may theoretically result in better immune system functions. Clinical evidence supporting this theory has, however, not been presented. With influenza vaccination response, we tried to address this question. Methods: 42 HD and 15 continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD) patients were vaccinated with a trivalent influenza vaccine, and the seroresponses at 5 weeks were measured. The results were compared with those of similarly vaccinated 20 nephrology outpatient clinic patients with varying degrees of renal insufficiency and those of 31 cardiac patients with normal renal function. Results: The dialysis patients had higher prevaccination titers of hemagglutination-inhibiting (HI) antibodies to all three vaccine virus antigens than the other groups due to more frequent previous vaccinations. The dialysis patients exhibited lower antibody increases, but an almost comparable proportion of them reached a protective antibody level (HI titers ≧40) 5 weeks after vaccination [A/H3N2: 61% (cardiac patients), 35% (nephrology outpatient clinic patients), 67% (CAPD), and 36% (HD); A/H1N1: 71, 70, 80 and 60; B: 97, 90, 80, and 76%, respectively]. Among the HD group, all patients receiving parenteral calcitriol except 1 (83%), but only 50% of the other HD patients produced protective antibody titers at least to two out of three vaccine virus antigens. No other patient- or HD treatment-associated parameter was significantly related to the vaccination-induced antibody response. Conclusions: We conclude that influenza vaccination of dialysis patients according to current recommendations may be effective. Additionally, our results suggest that parenteral calcitriol treatment may augment the immune response of HD patients even in a clinically relevant way, an effect so far shown only in in vitro studies.