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Kidney Int. 2004 Mar;65(3):990-8.

Willingness of dialysis patients to participate in a randomized controlled trial of daily dialysis.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.



The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has proposed conducting randomized controlled trials comparing short, daily, in-center hemodialysis with conventional hemodialysis. However, there is concern that difficulties recruiting patients may prevent the successful completion of such trials if patients believe the inconveniences of daily dialysis outweigh any potential health benefits.


To gauge willingness to participate in a daily dialysis trial, we described a hypothetical, randomized controlled trial comparing conventional to daily hemodialysis to 209 chronic hemodialysis patients, and assessed their motivations for and concerns about participating.


We found that 85 patients (41%) of 209 patients who agreed to be interviewed expressed some willingness to participate in the hypothetical trial. Patients who expressed greater willingness to participate were younger (OR for participating = 0.96 per year, 95% CI = 0.94 to 0.98, P= 0.001), less likely to smoke (OR = 0.38, 95% CI = 0.17 to 0.84, P= 0.017), more likely to have been hospitalized during the last 12 months (OR = 2.8, 95% CI = 1.5 to 5.5, P= 0.002), less likely to have reactive airway disease (OR = 0.21, 95% CI = 0.06 to 0.69, P= 0.01) or coronary artery disease (OR = 0.20, 95% CI = 0.08 to 0.53, P= 0.001), and less likely to be on the waiting list for a kidney transplant (OR = 0.23, 95% CI = 0.10 to 0.50, P < 0.0001).


The study suggests that less than half of eligible patients would be willing to participate in the randomized controlled trial. Differing willingness to participate across patient subgroups suggests that certain subgroups (i.e., older patients and those with coronary artery disease) will need to be targeted to ensure that results are generalizable to most hemodialysis patients.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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