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Ther Apher Dial. 2011 Feb;15(1):34-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1744-9987.2010.00853.x. Epub 2010 Aug 31.

Association between platelet-related hemostasis impairment and functional iron deficiency in hemodialysis patients.

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Department of Hematology, University Medical Centre, Ljubljana, Slovenia.


Hemostasis impairment and iron deficiency are relatively frequent in hemodialysis patients. Both conditions may contribute to anemia. The aim of our study was to explore possible associations between hemostasis impairment and iron deficiency by employing recently introduced methods for measurement of both conditions. Sixty-three hemodialysis patients were studied, with 30 age-matched, healthy controls. Hemostasis impairment was detected by in vitro closure time tests (collagen/epinephrine cartridge: CEPI; collagen/adenosine diphosphate (ADP) cartridge: CADP), whereas (functional) iron deficiency was measured by reticulocyte hemoglobin content (CHr) and the percentage of hypochromic red cells (HRC). We found that the patient group (N=14) with functional iron deficiency (CHr<29) had significantly delayed in vitro closure times in comparison to the patients (N=49) without functional iron deficiency. Furthermore, both types of closure time (CEPI and CADP) correlate highly significantly with CHr (P=0.002, and P=0.001). Such an association was not observed between in vitro closure time and HRC. We found a significant correlation between hemostasis impairment (measured by in vitro closure time) and iron deficiency (measured by CHr) in hemodialysis patients. This correlation has not previously been reported. It seems that in hemodialysis patients the hemostasis impairment affects (functional) iron deficiency, most likely by facilitating excessive blood loss and consequent iron deficiency. Thus, it appears that a delayed in vitro closure time along with decreased CHr may identify hemodialysis patients who suffer (occult) blood loss and/or excessive blood loss during hemodialysis procedure. The clinical value of this finding should be tested in larger studies.

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