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MINERVA UROLOGICA E NEFROLOGICA

A Journal on Nephrology and Urology


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REVIEWS  HEMODIALYSIS: YESTERDAY, TODAY AND TOMORROW


Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2010 March;62(1):1-11

Copyright © 2010 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Hemodialysis: yesterday, today and tomorrow

Cavalli A., Del Vecchio L., Manzoni C., Locatelli F.

Department of Nephrology, Dialysis and Renal Transplant, “A. Manzoni” Hospital, Lecco, Italy


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Hemodialysis was born in 1945 to treat acute renal failure, and it has progressively become a rescue therapy for patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stage 5, otherwise doomed to death. During the years, technological innovations have led to improved dialytic tolerance, making possible to extend the treatment to a greater number of subjects. Low- and high-flux bicarbonate dialysis are nowadays the most frequent hemodialysis techniques; hemodiafiltration with different modalities, short daily and overnight hemo-dialysis are also widespread, each of them with peculiar characteristics. A recent randomized controlled clinical trial has identified high-flux hemodialysis as the best treatment for patients with low serum levels of albumin and for diabetics in comparison to low flux dialysis. Apart from the treatment of end-stage renal disease (ESRD), hemodialysis has new and important applications, including heart failure treatment and multiple myeloma. The need to provide hemodialysis patients a better quality of life has increased the interest in developing new techniques, such as the wearable artificial kidney, although still in initial clinical development. During the last 60 years, we have seen an exciting evolution in the field of hemodialysis, which has led to important changes in the outcome of ESRD patients. The preclinical and clinical hard work ongoing in earlier stages of CKD should be able to obtain further relevant improvements and maybe avoid the need of hemodialysis itself.

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f.locatelli@ospedale.lecco.it