Journal Watch

  1. Need an MRI? Ask for NAC + bicarb

    MRI contrast dye can damage kidneys. A new meta-analysis (study of studies) has found that two approaches are better than one in preventing this damage. N-acetylcystein (NAC, or Mucomyst®) plus bicarbonate-based IV fluid reduced the risk of damage by 35%. The authors say this combo treatment should be used for all high-risk patients—including those with CKD.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  2. CKD education saves lives

    A new study from Taiwan found that people who got CKD education were about 3 times less likely to need dialysis during the study period (about a year), and more than 5 times more likely to live than a control group that did not receive the education.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  3. Slow the rate of CKD with baking soda?

    A small UK pilot study found that a group of people with CKD who were randomly assigned to take a tablet of sodium bicarbonate each day had kidney function that fell 2/3 more slowly than controls. The baking soda group was less likely to need dialysis. More research is needed—and a doctor should supervise any medication use in CKD. But this is promising, and more studies may prove the benefit.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  4. If you have CKD, EAT!

    We know that malnutrition in people on dialysis is a killer. Turns out that the same holds true with earlier stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD). A new study found that people with CKD who had lower levels of protein (albumin) in their blood were 70% more likely to die.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  5. No tested CKD decision aids available

    A meta-analysis of 40 studies looks at how people with CKD decide which treatment to choose. The 4 key factors were:

    1. Personal relationships
    2. Keeping current well-being, normality, and quality of life
    3. Need for control
    4. Benefits vs. risks
    No reliable, tested decision aids are available—yet.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  6. CKD patients report lack of kidney knowledge

    Folks can't choose a home therapy if they don't know it exists. In a new study of 676 people with stage 3–5 chronic kidney disease, most reported having limited or no understanding of their options. The new Conditions for Coverage should help.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  7. Why Canadians choose self-care dialysis

    A new study randomized 70 new ESRD patients into standard options classes or to have the benefits of self-care taught with a booklet, video, and small group brainstorms. Compared to the group getting standard education, benefits group patients who valued lifestyle were 7 times more likely to choose self-care; those who valued freedom were 9.1 times more likely.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  8. Phosphorus in colas linked to CKD progression

    Soda is already worthless nutritionally—and some types can also raise the risk of chronic kidney disease. A recent study found almost 2 1/2 times the risk of CKD in those who drank 2 or more cola's a day (regular or diet). If you must drink the stuff, looks like it's safest to switch to a non-cola flavor.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  9. ESAs save lives and dollars in CKD

    Erythrocyte-stimulating agents like EPOGEN, Procrit, and Aranesp have gotten a bad rap lately. A new study looked back at data from 8,188 patients ages 15 or over with CKD and anemia who were enrolled in health plans. The findings: the 14.6% who received ESAs were less likely to be hospitalized or go to the ER, took longer to reach dialysis, were less likely to die in the hospital—and their care cost less, too.

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: Chronic Kidney Disease

  10. Prevent buttonhole infections with Mupirocin

    The Buttonhole technique for fistulas lessens needle pain, missed cannulations, and bumpy aneurysms. The only downside? A higher risk of staph infection. A new study finds that prescription mupirocin (Bactroban®) ointment, an antibiotic, reduced that risk by 35 times!

    Read the abstract » | (added 02/24/2011)

    Tags: