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N Engl J Med. 2018 Oct 26. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1810742. [Epub ahead of print]

Intravenous Iron in Patients Undergoing Maintenance Hemodialysis.

Author information

1
From the Department of Renal Medicine, King's College Hospital (I.C.M., C.W.), and University College London (D.C.W.), London, Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust and Hull York Medical School, Hull (S.B.), Lister Hospital, Stevenage (K.F.), and University of Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire (K.F.), the Department of Renal Medicine, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, Salford (P.A.K.), the British Heart Foundation Cardiovascular Research Centre (J.J.V.M.) and the Robertson Centre for Biostatistics (H.M., I.F.), University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Freeman Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne (C.R.V.T.), and the Oxford Kidney Unit, Churchill Hospital, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Oxford (C.G.W.) - all in the United Kingdom; and the Division of Cardiology and Metabolism, Department of Cardiology, Berlin-Brandenburg Center for Regenerative Therapies, German Center for Cardiovascular Research partner site Berlin, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin (S.D.A.).

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Intravenous iron is a standard treatment for patients undergoing hemodialysis, but comparative data regarding clinically effective regimens are limited.

METHODS:

In a multicenter, open-label trial with blinded end-point evaluation, we randomly assigned adults undergoing maintenance hemodialysis to receive either high-dose iron sucrose, administered intravenously in a proactive fashion (400 mg monthly, unless the ferritin concentration was >700 μg per liter or the transferrin saturation was ≥40%), or low-dose iron sucrose, administered intravenously in a reactive fashion (0 to 400 mg monthly, with a ferritin concentration of <200 μg per liter or a transferrin saturation of <20% being a trigger for iron administration). The primary end point was the composite of nonfatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, hospitalization for heart failure, or death, assessed in a time-to-first-event analysis. These end points were also analyzed as recurrent events. Other secondary end points included death, infection rate, and dose of an erythropoiesis-stimulating agent. Noninferiority of the high-dose group to the low-dose group would be established if the upper boundary of the 95% confidence interval for the hazard ratio for the primary end point did not cross 1.25.

RESULTS:

A total of 2141 patients underwent randomization (1093 patients to the high-dose group and 1048 to the low-dose group). The median follow-up was 2.1 years. Patients in the high-dose group received a median monthly iron dose of 264 mg (interquartile range [25th to 75th percentile], 200 to 336), as compared with 145 mg (interquartile range, 100 to 190) in the low-dose group. The median monthly dose of an erythropoiesis-stimulating agent was 29,757 IU in the high-dose group and 38,805 IU in the low-dose group (median difference, -7539 IU; 95% confidence interval [CI], -9485 to -5582). A total of 333 patients (30.5%) in the high-dose group had a primary end-point event, as compared with 343 (32.7%) in the low-dose group (hazard ratio, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.76 to 1.03; P<0.001 for noninferiority). In an analysis that used a recurrent-events approach, there were 456 events in the high-dose group and 538 in the low-dose group (rate ratio, 0.78; 95% CI, 0.66 to 0.92). The infection rate was the same in the two groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

Among patients undergoing hemodialysis, a high-dose intravenous iron regimen administered proactively was noninferior to a low-dose regimen administered reactively and resulted in lower doses of erythropoiesis-stimulating agent being administered. (Funded by Kidney Research UK; PIVOTAL EudraCT number, 2013-002267-25 .).

PMID:
30365356
DOI:
10.1056/NEJMoa1810742
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