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Intensive Care Med. 2017 Jun;43(6):730-749. doi: 10.1007/s00134-017-4832-y. Epub 2017 Jun 2.

Prevention of acute kidney injury and protection of renal function in the intensive care unit: update 2017 : Expert opinion of the Working Group on Prevention, AKI section, European Society of Intensive Care Medicine.

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Division of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Medical University Innsbruck, Anichstasse 35, 6020, Innsbruck, Austria.
Department of Internal Medicine III, University Hospital Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Surrey and Surrey Perioperative Anaesthesia and Critical Care Collaborative Research Group (SPACeR), Intensive Care Unit, Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Egerton Road, Guildford, GU2 7XX, United Kingdom.
Department of Intensive Care, Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Brussels, Belgium.
Department of Intensive Care Medicine, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent University, De Pintelaan 185, 9000, Ghent, Belgium.
Department of Critical Care and Nephrology, Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital, London, United Kingdom.
Department of Adult Intensive Care, VU University Medical Centre, De Boelelaan 1118, 1081 HZ, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Clinical Department and Laboratory of Intensive Care Medicine, Division of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, KU Leuven University, Leuven, Belgium.



Acute kidney injury (AKI) in the intensive care unit is associated with significant mortality and morbidity.


To determine and update previous recommendations for the prevention of AKI, specifically the role of fluids, diuretics, inotropes, vasopressors/vasodilators, hormonal and nutritional interventions, sedatives, statins, remote ischaemic preconditioning and care bundles.


A systematic search of the literature was performed for studies published between 1966 and March 2017 using these potential protective strategies in adult patients at risk of AKI. The following clinical conditions were considered: major surgery, critical illness, sepsis, shock, exposure to potentially nephrotoxic drugs and radiocontrast. Clinical endpoints included incidence or grade of AKI, the need for renal replacement therapy and mortality. Studies were graded according to the international GRADE system.


We formulated 12 recommendations, 13 suggestions and seven best practice statements. The few strong recommendations with high-level evidence are mostly against the intervention in question (starches, low-dose dopamine, statins in cardiac surgery). Strong recommendations with lower-level evidence include controlled fluid resuscitation with crystalloids, avoiding fluid overload, titration of norepinephrine to a target MAP of 65-70 mmHg (unless chronic hypertension) and not using diuretics or levosimendan for kidney protection solely.


The results of recent randomised controlled trials have allowed the formulation of new recommendations and/or increase the strength of previous recommendations. On the other hand, in many domains the available evidence remains insufficient, resulting from the limited quality of the clinical trials and the poor reporting of kidney outcomes.


Acute kidney injury; Prevention; Recommendations; Systematic review; Vasopressors; Volume expansion

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