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Clin Nephrol. 1992 May;37(5):264-7.

A controlled trial of recombinant human erythropoietin and nandrolone decanoate in the treatment of anemia in patients on chronic hemodialysis.

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  • 1Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Graduate Hospital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19146.


We conducted a prospective, randomized study in chronic hemodialysis patients in order to determine whether the erythropoietic response to low dose recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEpo) could be enhanced by administration with androgens. Patients received rHuEpo 40 U/kg intravenously three times weekly either alone (Group 1, n = 6) or with weekly intramuscular injection of 2 mg/kg nandrolone decanoate (Group 2, n = 6) for up to 16 weeks. Baseline hct, ferritin, N-terminal parathyroid hormone, and aluminum levels were similar. The mean weekly rate of rise in hct was 0.32 +/- 0.13% in Group 1 and 0.37 +/- 0.11% in Group 2, p = NS. Three of 6 patients in Group 1, but only 1 of 6 patients in Group 2, reached the target hct of 30% within 16 weeks. Two patients in Group 2 requested that the nandrolone decanoate be stopped prior to reaching target hct because of unacceptable side effects (acne). We conclude that many chronic hemodialysis patients appear to respond adequately to rHuEpo at the dose used in our study. Nandrolone decanoate does not enhance the response rate to this rHuEpo dose and is associated with significant side effects.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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