Arteriovenous fistulas (AVFs) appear to be clinically superior to catheters as vascular access for maintenance hemodialysis, but higher insertion costs and high disease burden and mortality obscure the issue of whether AVF placement before hemodialysis initiation represents a net cost savings. We aimed to investigate Medicare costs for patients beginning maintenance hemodialysis, as related to timing of arteriovenous fistula (AVF) placement.
Data were from Medicare claims for incident hemodialysis patients aged ≥ 67 years in 2006. The study period extended from two years before to one year after dialysis initiation. Patients identified as having AVFs were categorized by timing of placement (mature AVF at dialysis initiation, maturing AVF at initiation, post-initiation AVF placement). Because timing may be influenced by factors that also influence overall costs, the model accounted for this non-random treatment assignment. An ordered probit extension of the classic Heckman correction was employed after identifying an appropriate instrumental variable. A cohort with Medicare coverage before and after dialysis initiation was identified, and Medicare claims were used to identify comorbid conditions and treatment costs.
Principal findings are that earlier AVF placement leads to lower costs, with the potential for about $500 million in savings. Additionally, the effect of non-random treatment assignment is real and significant. In our data, the impact of AVF placement timing was understated when treatment selection was ignored.
For appropriate AVF candidates, having a mature AVF in place at the time of dialysis initiation appears to confer a cost savings.
Hemodialysis; endogenous selection; selection bias; vascular access
Although the arteriovenous fistula (AVF) is the recommended form of vascular access for patients with ESRD, its impact on patient perception of health status, quality of life (QOL), or satisfaction is unknown.
Design, setting, participants, and measurements
This study compared patient-reported health status and QOL scores and vascular access type among a national random sample of 1563 patients at dialysis initiation and day 60 of ESRD during 1996 to 1997. Patients were stratified into five categories: AVF at first dialysis and day 60 of ESRD, arteriovenous graft (AVG) at first dialysis and day 60, central venous catheter (CVC) at first dialysis and AVF at day 60, CVC at first dialysis and AVG at day 60, and CVC at first dialysis and day 60.
Ten percent (n = 154) of patients had an AVF, 21% (n = 326) had an AVG, and 69% (n = 1083) had a CVC at dialysis initiation; those who were most likely to use an AVF were white and male. After statistical adjustment, patients with persistent AVF use reported greater physical activity and energy, better emotional and social well-being, fewer symptoms, less effect of dialysis and burden of kidney disease, and better sleep compared with patients with persistent CVC use, whereas measures such as cognitive and sexual function did not differ by access type.
Compared with persistent CVC use, early persistent AVF use is associated with the perception of improved health status and QOL among patients with ESRD. Future longitudinal studies may help to clarify further the association between QOL and vascular access.
Although an arteriovenous fistula (AVF) is the hemodialysis access of choice, its prevalence continues to be lower than recommended in the United States. We assessed the association between past peripherally inserted central catheters (PICCs) and lack of functioning AVFs.
Participants & Setting
Prevalent hemodialysis population in 7 Mayo Clinic outpatient hemodialysis units. Cases were without functioning AVFs and controls were with functioning AVFs on January 31, 2011.
History of PICCs.
Lack of functioning AVFs.
On January 31, 2011, a total of 425 patients were receiving maintenance hemodialysis, of whom 282 were included in this study. Of these, 120 (42.5%; cases) were dialyzing through a tunneled dialysis catheter or synthetic arteriovenous graft and 162 (57.5%; controls) had a functioning AVF. PICC use was evaluated in both groups and identified in 30% of hemodialysis patients, with 54% of these placed after dialysis therapy initiation. Cases were more likely to be women (52.5% vs 33.3% in the control group; P = 0.001), with smaller mean vein (4.9 vs 5.8 mm; P < 0.001) and artery diameters (4.6 vs 4.9 mm; P = 0.01) than controls. A PICC was identified in 53 (44.2%) cases, but only 32 (19.7%) controls (P < 0.001). We found a strong and independent association between PICC use and lack of a functioning AVF (OR, 3.2; 95% CI, 1.9–5.5; P < 0.001). This association persisted after adjustment for confounders, including upper-extremity vein and artery diameters, sex, and history of central venous catheter (OR, 2.8; 95% CI, 1.5–5.5; P = 0.002).
Retrospective study, participants mostly white.
PICCs are commonly placed in patients with end-stage renal disease and are a strong independent risk factor for lack of functioning AVFs.
Chronic kidney disease; end-stage renal disease; arteriovenous fistula; hemodialysis; dialysis access
Hemodialysis access-related complications remain one of the most important sources of morbidity and cost among persons with end-stage renal disease, with total annual costs exceeding $1 billion annually. In this context, the creation and maintenance of an effective hemodialysis vascular access is essential for safe and adequate hemodialysis therapy. Multiple reports have documented the type of vascular access used for dialysis and associated risk of infection and mortality. Undoubtedly, the central venous catheter (CVC) is associated with the greatest risk of infection-related and all-cause mortality compared with the autogenous arteriovenous fistula (AVF) or synthetic graft (AVG). The AVF has the lowest risk of infection, longer patency rates, greater quality of life, and lower all-cause mortality compared with the AVG or CVC. It is for these reasons that the National Kidney Foundation’s Kidney Disease Outcome Quality Initiative Clinical Practice Guidelines for Vascular Access recommend the early placement and use of the AVF among at least 50% of incident hemodialysis patients. This report presents catheter-related mortality and calls for heightened awareness of catheter-related complications.
Vascular access maintenance is crucial to providing adequate hemodialysis (HD) and hence preventing signs and symptoms of uremia. The best vascular assess is a permanent arteriovenous fistula (AVF) because it has the longest survival with the least number of complications. However, because of problems with AVF maturation, the majority of HD in the United States is provided via an arteriovenous graft (AVG) or tunneled cuffed central venous catheter. The most common access complications include infection and thrombosis. For these reasons, a patient is often referred to interventional radiology for a procedure such as a catheter placement, change, or a thrombectomy with angioplasty and/or stent placement. Commonly, a HD patient will present after missing a dialysis session. This might predispose the patient to further complications. This review is intended to provide insight into some of the common medical problems (infectious, hematologic, and cardiac) facing a HD patient as a consequence of uremia. Increased awareness to these medical issues provides guidance to prevent unnecessary complications in this difficult patient population.
Hemodialysis; vascular access; interventional radiology; bacteremia; coagulation
The analysis of hemodialysis services is relevant for the quality of life of patient. In this study we investigated the profile of vascular access used for hemodialysis patients in our Unit.
We evaluated 219 patients of both genders aged over 18 years old who have undergone implant or manufacture of vascular hemodialysis access. We excluded patients on renal replacement therapy by peritoneal dialysis.
Associated diseases were hypertension and diabetes mellitus. 161 had arteriovenous fistula, with 153 held by the same dialysis and nine of them were still maturing. 27 patients on dialysis used central venous catheter. 148 were indigenous and five were made using polytetrafluoroethylene prosthesis (PTFE). Among the 27 patients with central venous catheters, ten used short-term catheter and 17 used long-term catheter. The most frequent type of fistula use was on the radio distal cephalic, in 85 patients (52.5%), followed by radio cephalic proximal in 26 patients (16%). The number of fistulas in dialysis patients conducted by this kind of therapy ranged from one to ten and in 64 patients (41.83%) fistula was the first and only to be made. Among the fistula for dialysis patients, the highest prevalence was radio cephalic fistula in 111 patients (72.5%) and mean duration of use was 48.1 months, ranging from two months to 17 years.
Our Unit of hemodialysis is above the limits established by international norms.
For chronic hemodialysis, the ideal permanent vascular access is the arteriovenous fistula (AVF). Temporary catheters should be reserved for acute dialysis needs. The AVF is associated with lower infection rates, better clinical results, and a higher quality of life and survival when compared to temporary catheters. In Brazil, the proportion of patients with temporary catheters for more than 3 months from the beginning of therapy is used as an evaluation of the quality of renal units. The aim of this study is to evaluate factors associated with the time between the beginning of hemodialysis with temporary catheters and the placement of the first arteriovenous fistula in Brazil.
This is an observational, prospective non-concurrent study using national administrative registries of all patients financed by the public health system who began renal replacement therapy (RRT) between 2000 and 2004 in Brazil. Incident patients were eligible who had hemodialysis for the first time. Patients were excluded who: had hemodialysis reportedly started after the date of death (inconsistent database); were younger than 18 years old; had HIV; had no record of the first dialysis unit; and were dialyzed in units with less than twenty patients. To evaluate individual and renal unit factors associated with the event of interest, the frailty model was used (N = 55,589).
Among the 23,824 patients (42.9%) who underwent fistula placement in the period of the study, 18.2% maintained the temporary catheter for more than three months until the fistula creation. The analysis identified five statistically significant factors associated with longer time until first fistula: higher age (Hazard-risk - HR 0.99, 95% CI 0.99-1.00); having hypertension and cardiovascular diseases (HR 0.94, 95% CI 0.9-0.98) as the cause of chronic renal disease; residing in capitals cities (HR 0.92, 95% CI 0.9-0.95) and certain regions in Brazil - South (HR 0.83, 95% CI 0.8-0.87), Midwest (HR 0.88, 95% CI 0.83-0.94), Northeast (HR 0.91, 95% CI 0.88-0.94), or North (HR 0.88, 95% CI 0.83-0.94) and the type of renal unit (public or private).
Monitoring the provision of arteriovenous fistulas in renal units could improve the care given to patients with end stage renal disease.
To determine the cost-effectiveness of two different vascular access strategies among incident dialysis patients.
Summary Background Data
Vascular access is a principal cause of morbidity and cost in hemodialysis patients. Recent guidelines and initiatives are intended to increase the proportion of patients with a fistula. However, there is growing awareness of the high prevalence of fistula failures and attendant complications.
A decision analysis using a Markov model was implemented to compare two different vascular access strategies among incident dialysis patients: a) placing an arteriovenous fistula (AVF1st) as the initial access followed by a synthetic vascular access if the AVF did not mature compared to b) placing a synthetic vascular access (SVA1st) as the initial access device. The cost-utility was evaluated across a range of the risk of complications from temporary catheters and SVA.
Under base case assumptions, the AVF1st strategy yielded 2.19 QALYs compared to 2.06 QALYs from the SVA1st strategy. The incremental cost-effectiveness was $9389/QALY for AVF1st compared to SVA1st and was less than $50,000 per QALY as long as the probability of maturation is 36% or greater. AVF1st was the dominant strategy when the AVF maturation rate was 69% or greater.
The high risk of complications of temporary catheters and the overall low AVF maturation rate explain why a universal policy of AVF 1st for all incident dialysis patients may not optimize clinical outcomes. Strong consideration should be given to a more patient-centered approach taking into account the likelihood of AVF maturation.
Early arteriovenous fistula (AVF) creation is necessary to curb the use of central venous catheters (CVCs) and reduce their complications. We sought to examine patient characteristics that may influence persistent CVC use 90 days after dialysis therapy initiation among patients using a CVC.
Data from the 1999 to 2003 Clinical Performance Measures Project was linked to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Medical Evidence (2728) form.
Most patients (59.4%) starting dialysis with a CVC failed to transition to permanent access within 90 days, whereas 25.4% received a graft and only 15.2% received an AVF. Older patients (>75 years) were more than 2-fold more likely to remain CVC dependent at 90 days (P = 0.0.001) compared with those younger than 50 years. In addition, race and sex were highly predictive of CVC dependence at 90 days; black females, white females, and black males were 75% (P < 0.001), 61% (P < 0.001), and 35% (P = 0.023) more likely than white males to maintain CVC use, whereas patients with ischemic heart disease and peripheral vascular disease were 35% (P = 0.023) and 39% (P = 0.007) more likely to remain CVC dependent at 90 days, respectively.
Prolonged CVC dependence is more likely to occur among patients of older age, females, blacks, and those with cardiovascular comorbidity, suggesting inadequate or late access referral or greater primary access failure. Our findings suggest possible missed opportunities for early conversion of patients to permanent vascular access that may vary by race and sex.
Hemodialysis vascular access
Ideally, care prior to the initiation of dialysis should increase the likelihood that patients start electively outside of the hospital setting with a mature arteriovenous fistula (AVF) or peritoneal dialysis (PD) catheter. However, unplanned dialysis continues to occur in patients both known and unknown to nephrology services, and in both late and early referrals. The objective of this article is to review the clinical and socioeconomic outcomes of unplanned dialysis initiation. The secondary objective is to explore the potential cost implications of reducing the rate of unplanned first dialysis in Canada.
MEDLINE and EMBASE from inception to 2008 were used to identify studies examining the clinical, economic or quality of life (QoL) outcomes in patients with an unplanned versus planned first dialysis. Data were described in a qualitative manner.
Eight European studies (5,805 patients) were reviewed. Duration of hospitalization and mortality was higher for the unplanned versus planned population. Patients undergoing a first unplanned dialysis had significantly worse laboratory parameters and QoL. Rates of unplanned dialysis ranged from 24-49%. The total annual burden to the Canadian healthcare system of unplanned dialysis in 2005 was estimated at $33 million in direct hospital costs alone. Reducing the rate of unplanned dialysis by one-half yielded savings ranging from $13.3 to $16.1 million.
The clinical and socioeconomic impact of unplanned dialysis is significant. To more consistently characterize the unplanned population, the term suboptimal initiation is proposed to include dialysis initiation in hospital and/or with a central venous catheter and/or with a patient not starting on their chronic modality of choice. Further research and implementation of initiatives to reduce the rate of suboptimal initiation of dialysis in Canada are needed.
Objectives: To determine whether sex- and ethnicity-based mortality differences in patients dependent on hemodialysis (hemodialysis patients) are because of prevalence of vascular access type.
Methods: Southern California Permanente Medical Group Renal Database, which contained 5821 chronic hemodialysis patients between 2000 and 2008, was studied.
Results: Mean age of the patients was 62 years, and 59% were male. Of the population, 33% were white; 32%, Hispanic; 23%, African American; 9%, Asian/Pacific Islander; and 3%, other race or ethnicity. Predominant access type over the course of the study was arteriovenous fistula (AVF) in 73%, arteriovenous graft (AVG) in 12%, and tunneled catheter in 14%. There was a higher percentage of AVF in whites (71%) than in African Americans (63%). Risk of death was independently increased by age (hazard ratio [HR], 1.04; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.04–1.05), male sex (HR, 1.33; 95% CI, 1.22–1.45), diabetes (HR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.12–1.33), use of an AVG (HR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.34–1.71) or a tunneled catheter (HR, 6.45; 95% CI, 5.78–7.20). Compared with whites, African-American race decreased the risk of death (HR, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.56–0.70), as did Asian/Pacific Islander (HR, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.49–0.69), Hispanic (HR, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.51–0.65), and other race (HR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.52–0.86).
Conclusion: Age, sex, race or ethnicity, access type, and diabetes are independent risk factors for mortality in hemodialysis patients. After controlling for potential confounders, when compared with whites, minorities all demonstrate significantly decreased risk of mortality. African Americans had reduced mortality risk despite a lower prevalence of arteriovenous fistula compared with whites. Male sex increased mortality. Differences in mortality between sexes and ethnicities in this population cannot be accounted for by differences in type of dialysis access.
Introduction. Native arteriovenous fistula (AVF) is the recommended vascular access for HD patients by the Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative (DOQI) guidelines. The aim of our study was to determine the correlation between diameter and maturation of vessels in radiocephalic AVF. Methods. A prospective cross-sectional study carried out during 2006-2007 on 96 hemodialysis patients from Hasheminejad Kidney Center with non probability selection, all of them with end to side native AVF. Results. In this population 62.5% had wrist (distal radial artery) AVF and 37.5% had antecubital (proximal radial artery) AVF. The mean diameter of artery was 2.57 mm (SD = 1.09) and the mean diameter of vein was 2.40 mm (SD = 0.79). The mean of maturation period was 38.60 days (SD = 42.13). There were no relationship between duration of maturation period and diabetes mellitus, sex, age, diameter of vein and artery (P > 0.05). Period of maturation showed some correlation with the diameter of vein (P = 0.04) in patients with distal radiocephalic fistulae. Conclusions. The maturation of fistula shows correlation with vein diameter, but no correlation was seen with diameter of the arteries. There is much discrepancy between times to maturation in various reports. The average time for fistula maturation was 38/6 days in our study.
Central venous catheters (CVCs) are associated with early mortality in dialysis patients. However, some patients progress to end stage renal disease after an acute illness, prior to reaching an estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) at which one would expect to establish alternative access (fistula/peritoneal dialysis catheter). The purpose of this study was to determine if exclusion of this “acute start” patient group alters the association between CVCs and mortality.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 406 incident dialysis patients from 1 Jan 2006 to 31 Dec 2009. Patients were classified as acute starts if 1) the eGFR was >25 ml/min/1.73 m2, ≤3 months prior to dialysis initiation and declined after an acute event (n = 45), or 2) in those without prior eGFR measurements, there was no supporting evidence of chronic kidney disease on history or imaging (n = 12). Remaining patients were classified as chronic start (n = 349).
98 % and 52 % of acute and chronic starts initiated dialysis with a CVC. There were 148 deaths. The adjusted mortality hazard ratio (HR) for acute vs. chronic start patients was 1.84, (95 % CI [1.19-2.85]). The adjusted mortality HR for patients dialyzing with a CVC compared to alternative access was 1.19 (95 % CI [0.80-1.77]). After excluding acute start patients, the adjusted HR fell to 1.03 (95 % CI [0.67-1.57]).
A significant proportion of early dialysis mortality occurs after an acute start. Exclusion of this population attenuates the mortality risk associated with CVCs.
Vascular; Mortality; Dialysis; Catheter; Incident; Access; Fistula; Peritoneal; Acute; Chronic
Little has been written about acute blood loss from hemodialysis vascular access. We describe a 57-year-old Caucasian male with an approximately 7 gm/dL drop in hemoglobin due to bleeding from a ruptured aneurysm in his right brachiocephalic arteriovenous fistula (AVF). There was no evidence of fistula infection. The patient was successfully managed by blood transfusions and insertion of a tunneled dialysis catheter for dialysis access. Later, the fistula was ligated and a new fistula was constructed in the opposite arm. Aneurysm should be considered in cases of acute vascular access bleeding in chronic dialysis patients.
The arteriovenous fistula (AVF) is the recommended form of dialysis vascular access, however, limited studies suggest that AVF creation may result in increased cardiovascular stress and remodeling. To explore the contribution of vascular access type to cardiovascular-related (CV) mortality, we analyzed USRDS Clinical Performance Measures data comprising 4854 patients that initiated dialysis between October 1, 1999–December 31, 2004. CV mortality included death from acute myocardial infarction, atherosclerotic heart disease, cardiomyopathy, arrhythmia, cardiac arrest or stroke. Risk of cardiovascular mortality during a 4-year observation was analyzed by Cox-regression methods with adjustments for demographic and co-morbid conditions. AVF use was strongly associated with lower all-cause and CV mortality. After adjustment for covariates, AVF use 90 days after dialysis initiation remained significantly associated with lower cardiovascular mortality [hazard ratio (HR) 0.69, p = 0.0004] compared with catheter use. These findings suggest that vascular access type influences cause-specific mortality beyond that of infection, and support existing guidelines recommending the use of an AVF early in the course of chronic end-stage renal disease therapy.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) established a national goal of 66% arterio-venous fistula (AVF) use among prevalent hemodialysis (HD) patients for the current Fistula First Breakthrough Initiative (FFBI). The feasibility of achieving the goal has been debated. We examined contemporary patterns of AVF use among prevalent patients to assess the potential for attaining the goal by dialysis facilities and their associated end-stage renal disease (ESRD) Networks in the United States (US).
Setting and Participants
US dialysis facilities with a mean HD patient census of 10 or more over the 40 month study period, January 2007 to April 2010.
Outcomes and Measurements
Mean changes in facility-level AVF use and the percent of facilities achieving the 66% prevalent AVF goal within the US and each Network.
US mean prevalent AVF use within dialysis facilities increased from 45.3% to 55.5% (P < 0.001) in the US but varied substantially across regions. The percent of facilities achieving the 66% AVF use goal increased from 6.4% to 19.0% (P < 0. 001). Over the 40 months, 35.9% of facilities achieved the CMS goal at least one month. On average, these facilities sustained mean (SD) use of 66% or greater for 12.9 (11.7) months. Casemix and other facility characteristics explained 20% of the variation in the proportion of facility patients using an AVF in the last measured month, leaving substantial unexplained variability.
This analysis is limited by the absence of facilities’ case-mix data over time and the national scope of the initiative precludes use of a comparison group.
Achieving the CMS goal of 66% prevalent AVF use is feasible for individual dialysis facilities. There is a need to reduce regional variation before the CMS goal can be fully realized for US hemodialysis facilities.
Arterio-venous fistula; end-stage renal disease; hemodialysis
Low levels of physical activity among end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients are associated with increased risk of hospitalization and mortality, and contributors to low activity levels are important to identify. Among hemodialysis (HD) patients, use of a central venous catheter (CVC) might impede physical activity due to factors such as infection or patient fear of catheter dislodgement.
This Comprehensive Dialysis Study surveyed patients who had recently started regular dialysis. Physical activity level was ascertained using responses to the Human Activity Profile (HAP) provided by 1,458 HD participants. We examined the association of vascular access type with patients’ scores on HAP subscales measuring self-care and leg effort, two dimensions that are especially important for daily living.
32.6% of patients used an arteriovenous fistula (AVF), 11.5% used an arteriovenous graft, 51.8% used a CVC, and 4.1% used a CVC with another maturing access. Patients’ self-care and leg effort scores differed by vascular access type and receipt of early nephrology care, and the mean self-care score of AVF users who received early care was similar to the mean score reported for healthy adults.
Reported levels of self-care and leg effort activity were higher among incident HD patients using an AVF compared to those using a CVC. Future research should examine whether reinforcing the importance of regular physical activity in the pre-dialysis period, as well as wider early use of AVF in the HD population, may improve physical activity levels among ESRD patients.
Dialysis vascular access; Physical function
The population of patients with ESRD in the United States is progressively increasing, with hemodialysis (HD) as the major mode of renal replacement therapy. The National Kidney Foundation's Dialysis Outcomes and Quality Initiative and the Fistula First Initiative recommend increasing the use of arteriovenous fistulae (AVF) in both incident and prevalent hemodialysis patients. One measure proposed is the use of pre-operative vascular mapping to assess the upper extremities for the presence of suitable vessels prior to the surgical creation of an AVF among both pre-dialysis CKD and ESRD patients on HD. This article aims to review the literature on vascular mapping, including the various techniques; their advantages and disadvantages; and whether they help to maximize the AVF creation rate as well as increase the use of AVF in the HD population.
Venous mapping; Hemodialysis
Background. The contribution of the hemodialysis (HD) vascular access type to inflammation is unclear. Methods. We conducted a prospective observational study in an incident HD population. C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and interferon-γ-induced protein (IP-10) were measured before and at 6-time points after access placement for 1 year. Results. Sixty-four incident HD patients were included (tunneled catheter (TC), n = 40, arteriovenous fistula (AVF), n = 14, and arteriovenous graft (AVG), n = 10). A mixed effects model was performed to adjust for age, sex, race, coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus, infections, access thrombosis, initiation of HD, and days after access surgery. In comparison to AVFs, the presence of a TC was associated with significantly higher levels of CRP (P = 0.03), IL-6 (P = 0.07), and IP-10 (P = 0.03). The presence of an AVG was associated with increases in CRP (P = 0.01) and IP-10 (P = 0.07). Conclusions. Patients who initiate HD with a TC or an AVG have a heightened state of inflammation, which may contribute to the excess 90-day mortality after HD initiation.
The demand for vascular hemodialysis access creation is steadily increasing. To satisfy the demand, a vascular access team was established at the University Hospital of the West Indies, Jamaica. The outcomes of this practice are reported.
A retrospective study of all patients who had permanent vascular dialysis access established at the University Hospital of the West Indies between January 1, 2002, and December 31, 2006, was performed. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 12.0 (SPSS Inc, USA).
A direct anastomosis between an autogenous artery and vein was considered an arteriovenous fistula (AVF). When prosthetic material was used, the access was considered to be an arteriovenous graft. Accesses that were nonfunctional after six weeks of maturation were considered to be primary failures, while those that failed after previous successful dialysis were considered to be secondary failures. Primary patency was defined as the interval between access placement and the first intervention for failure. Secondary patency was the interval between access placement and abandonment. Cumulative patency was defined as the number of accesses that remained patent over a given time period, regardless of the number of interventions performed.
Of 41 patients, nine were excluded due to incomplete data. Final analyses were performed on 32 patients with a mean (± SD) age of 42.3±15.3 years (range 18 to 66 years, median 43 years). The access type was an AVF in 100% of cases, which included distal radiocephalic fistulas in 27 patients, brachial-cephalic fistulas in three patients and proximal radiocephalic fistulas in two patients. Operations were performed in four (12.5%) incident and 28 (87.5%) prevalent dialysis patients. The mean delay between initiation of dialysis and AVF creation was 21.2±26.1 months (range one to 94 months, median 10 months).
There were eight (25%) primary failures. Of the remaining 24 patients, there were seven (29.2%) secondary failures from thrombosis. There was primary patency for a mean of 723.9±422.1 days (range 199 to 1314 days, median 678 days). Only one (4.2%) patient had thrombectomy to prolong AVF function, resulting in secondary patency for 439 days. Cumulative patency was 62.5%, 33.3%, 25% and 4.2% for one, two, three and four years, respectively.
The rate of AVF creation for end-stage renal disease patients in this setting far exceeds the target goals set forward by the National Kidney Foundation published updated Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative (NKF/DOQI) Guidelines and the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services Fistula First initiative. This is being achieved with acceptable rates of morbidity and patency. There is room for improvement in postoperative surveillance to increase early detection of failing accesses and allow for increased utility of interventions for assisted patency.
Arteriovenous fistula; Hemodialysis; Stage V kidney disease; Vascular access
In candidate patients for permanent hemodialysis or dialysis on a regular basis, an appropriate vascular access has great importance. The best permanent access is AVF (arterio venous fistula). Use of a technique to create AVF with better patency seems to be logical.
The present study aimed to compare the efficacy rate of AVFs using two different anastomosis methods; Side to Side (STS) versus End to Side (ETS) and to determine whether the different approaches render any preferences or complications.
Patients and Methods
Sixty end stage renal disease (ESRD) patients were included in this clinical trial in two assigned groups of 30 patients. In one group end to side method to create AVF was used while in the other group Side to Side technique was applied for access in surgery. Both groups were followed for duration of 6 months to assess patency. For evaluating the quantitive variables, t-test was used while qualitative variables were measured using the chi-square and Fisher`s exact tests.
In the 6 months duration, 6 patients (20%) in the STS (side to side) group and 5 patients (16.6%) in the ETS (end to side) group experienced a non-functional AVF. In the ETS group the failure was generally a result of thrombosed access while in the STS group, 4 out of 6 patients with complications, experienced thrombosis while the other 2 patients had venous hypertension. The total failure rate was 18.3% and during the 6 months of follow up no significant difference was detected in the efficacy rate. Nevertheless, in case of longer follow ups, different outcomes could be seen.
This study demonstrated that there was no significant statistical difference between the functional patency rates of fistulae placed by STS or ETS methods.
Kidney Failure, Chronic; Anastomosis, Surgical; Arteriovenous Fistula
Interventional Nephrology is a new and emerging subspecialty of Nephrology that mainly deals with ultrasonography of kidneys and ultrasound-guided renal biopsy, insertion of peritoneal dialysis catheters, tunneled dialysis catheters as a vascular access for patients undergoing hemodialysis as well as percutaneous endovascular procedures performed to manage dysfunction of arteriovenous fistulas or grafts in end stage renal disease patients.
Traditionally, these procedures have been delegated to a variety of specialists with resultant delays in diagnosis and initiation of therapy. To avoid the delays nephrologists have taken the initiative to perform these procedures themselves. Indeed, recent data have emphasized that nephrologists can safely and successfully perform these procedures with excellent results.
The success of nephrologist’s role in Interventional Nephrology insures the ideal management of renal patients with effectiveness, safety and lower cost for Public Health System. Certainly nephrologists must have adequate training and develop the necessary skills in the new fields as a prerequisite for the success of the concept.
interventional nephrology; end stage renal disease; hemodialysis; peritoneal dialysis
The number of patients with chronic kidney disease requiring renal replacement therapy has increased worldwide. The most common replacement therapy is hemodialysis (HD). Vascular access (VA) has a key role for successful treatment. Despite the advances that have taken place in the field of the HD procedure, few things have changed with regards to VA in recent years. Arteriovenous fistula (AVF), polytetrafluoroethylene graft and the cuffed double lumen silicone catheter are the most common used for VA. In the long term, a number of complications may present and more than one VA is needed during the HD life. The most common complications for all of VA types are thrombosis, bleeding and infection, the most common cause of morbidity in these patients. It has been estimated that VA dysfunction is responsible for 20% of all hospitalizations. The annual cost of placing and looking after dialysis VA in the United States exceeds 1 billion dollars per year. A good functional access is also vital in order to deliver adequate HD therapy. It seems that the native AVF that Brescia and Cimino described in 1966 still remains the first choice for VA. The native forearm AVFs have the longest survival and require the fewest interventions. For this reason, the forearm AVF is the first choice, followed by the upper-arm AVF, the arteriovenous graft and the cuffed central venous catheter is the final choice. In conclusion, VA remains the most important issue for patients on HD and despite the technical improvements, a number of problems and complications have to be resolved.
Hemodialysis; Vascular access; Arteriovenous fistula; Arteriovenous graft; Central venous catheter; Cuffed central venous catheter
Chronic hemodialysis patients frequently require vascular access through central venous catheters (CVCs). The most significant complication of these catheters is infection. This risk can be lowered by the use of an antibiotic-Heparin lock. This study focuses on hemodialysis patients using Tunneled-cuffed catheters (TCC), to assess the rate of catheter-related infections (CRI) in catheter-restricted filling with Cefotaxime and Heparin in end stage renal disease patients.
A double-blind randomized study was conducted to compare 5000 U/ml Heparin plus10 mg/ml cefotaxime (CE/HS) as catheter-lock solutions, with Heparin (5000 U/ml) alone. A total of 30 patients with end-stage renal disease and different etiologies, were enrolled for chronic hemodialysis with permanent catheters from December 2009 to March 2010. These patients were randomly assigned to two groups of 15 members. Blood samples were collected for culture, sensitivity, and colony count, from the catheter lumen and the peripheral vein. CRI was considered as the end point.
The rate of CRI was significantly lower in the cefotaxime group versus control group (p < 0.001). No exit site infection was occurred in both groups. Infection-free survival rates at 180 days were 100% for the CE/HS group, and 56% for the HS group.
Antibiotic lock therapy using cefotaxime reduces the risk of CRI in hemodialysis patients.
Catheter; Hemodialysis; Lock Solution Infection; Cefotaxime; Heparin
Arteriovenous fistulas (AVFs) are considered superior to arteriovenous grafts and catheters. Never-theless, AVF prevalence in the United States remains under the established target. The complication rates and financial cost of vascular access continue to rise and disproportionately contribute to the burgeoning health care costs. The relationship between financial incentives for a type of vascular access and rate of access placement is unclear. All chronic hemodialysis patients (n=99) receiving care at Philadelphia Veterans Affairs Medical Center as of August 1, 2008 were participants. Demographic characteristics, vascular access type, and nonrelative value unit compensation were assessed as predictors, and the vascular access prevalence rate, operative times, and frequency of access interventions were analyzed. A 73.7% AVF rate was achieved in this cohort of patients with 51.5% diabetes mellitus. The number of access procedures per patient per year remained constant over time. The Philadelphia Veterans Affairs Medical Center, a single payer system, achieved superior AVF prevalence and exceeded the national AVF target. Financial incentives for arteriovenous graft placement currently exist in the United States, as there is similar Medicare reimbursement for arterio-venous graft and basilic vein transposition, despite longer operative times for basilic vein transpositions. The high AVF prevalence at the Philadelphia Veterans Affairs Medical Center may be due to the VA nonrelative value unit-driven system that allows for interdisciplinary care, priority of AVFs, and frequent use of basilic vein transposition surgery, when appropriate. We have identified an important, hypothesis-generating example of a nonrelative value unit-based approach to vascular access yielding superior results with respect to patient care and cost.
Fistula; hemodialysis; health care economics