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Crit Care Res Pract. 2012;2012:691013. doi: 10.1155/2012/691013. Epub 2012 Nov 26.

Risk factors for development of acute kidney injury in critically ill patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies.

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Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Mayo Clinic, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA.



Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a frequent complication of critically ill patients. The impact of different risk factors associated with this entity in the ICU setting is unknown.


The purpose of this research was to assess the risk factors associated with the development of AKI in critically ill patients by meta-analyses of observational studies.


Two reviewers independently and in duplicate used a standardized form to collect data from published reports. Authors were contacted for missing data. The Newcastle-Ottawa scale assessed study quality.


Data from 31 diverse studies that enrolled 504,535 critically ill individuals from a wide variety of ICUs were included. Separate random-effects meta-analyses demonstrated a significantly increased risk of AKI with older age, diabetes, hypertension, higher baseline creatinine, heart failure, sepsis/systemic inflammatory response syndrome, use of nephrotoxic drugs, higher severity of disease scores, use of vasopressors/inotropes, high risk surgery, emergency surgery, use of intra-aortic balloon pump, and longer time in cardiopulmonary bypass pump.


The best available evidence suggests an association of AKI with 13 different risk factors in subjects admitted to the ICU. Predictive models for identification of high risk individuals for developing AKI in all types of ICU are required.

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