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Qual Life Res. 2007 Jun;16(5):755-65. Epub 2007 Feb 8.

Relation between level or change of hemoglobin and generic and disease-specific quality of life measures in hemodialysis.

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Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.



We sought to examine the relation between meeting or exceeding the current minimum guideline for hemoglobin (11 g/dl) in dialysis patients and generic and disease-specific QOL scores at 1 year.


In 438 incident hemodialysis patients from a national prospective cohort study, we used regression models to predict QOL score (all scaled 0-100) at 1 year using 6-month values of hemoglobin, adjusting for potential confounders.


Compared to values < 11 g/dl, hemoglobin > or = 11 g/dl at 6 months was associated with higher scores for the general domains of physical functioning, role physical, mental health, social functioning, and bodily pain at 1 year; cognitive function, diet restriction, and dialysis access dialysis-specific domain scores were also higher for these patients. Each 1 g/dl greater hemoglobin was also statistically significantly associated with higher QOL scores for most domains. In longitudinal analyses, most of the domains showed that, with each 1 g/dl increase in hemoglobin concentration from baseline to 6 months, QOL score increased significantly over the first year.


Hemodialysis patients who attain higher hemoglobin concentration at 6 months, especially > or = 11 g/dl, have better QOL at 1 year, with regard to important physical, mental, social, and cognitive domains.

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