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Kidney Int. 2006 Feb;69(3):560-4.

Association of anemia with outcomes in men with moderate and severe chronic kidney disease.

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Division of Nephrology, Salem Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Salem, Virginia, USA.


Anemia is a common complication of chronic kidney disease (CKD), but the outcomes associated with lower hemoglobin (Hgb) levels in patients with CKD not yet on dialysis are not well characterized. Analyses exploring outcomes associated with a single baseline Hgb value also do not account for the longitudinal variation of this measure. After collecting all Hgb measurements (N=17 194, median (range): 12 (1-168)) over a median follow-up period of 2.1 years in a historical prospective cohort of 853 male US veterans with CKD Stages 3-5 not yet on dialysis, we examined the association of time-averaged Hgb levels with predialysis all-cause mortality, end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and a composite end point of both. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and Cox models adjusted for age, race, body mass index, smoking status, blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, categories of estimated glomerular filtration rate, serum concentrations of albumin and cholesterol, and proteinuria were examined. Lower time-averaged Hgb was associated with significantly higher hazard of the composite end point (hazard ratio (95% confidence interval) in the adjusted model for time-averaged Hgb of <110, 111-120 and 121-130, compared to >130 g/l: 2.57 (1.85-3.58), 1.97 (1.45-2.66), 1.19 (0.86-1.63), P(trend)<0.001). Lower time-averaged Hgb was associated with both significantly higher pre-dialysis mortality and higher risk of ESRD, when analyzed separately. Anemia (especially time-averaged Hgb <120 g/l) is associated with both higher mortality and increased risk of ESRD in male patients with CKD not yet on dialysis.

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