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Minerva Cardioangiologica 2011 April;59(2):121-6


language: English

Cardiovascular outcome in asymptomatic hemodialysis patients submitted to aggressive medical therapy: results of a four-year follow-up

Summaria F., Manca Di Villahermosa S., Tedesco M., Lonzi M., Colarieti G., Chamoun M. G., Taccone Gallucci M.

Department of Cardiology and Nephrology, Policlinico Casilino, Rome, Italy


AIM: Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients on maintenance hemodialysis (HD). Neither traditional nor emerging risk factors for cardiovascular disease can explain completely this excess of morbidity and mortality and the role and timing of primary prevention strategies in this population has not been clarified. The aim of this study was to assess if an aggressive pharmacological preventive treatment may reduce the myocardial ischemic burden and then improve the cardiovascular outcome In ESRD patients.
METHODS: Forty-three asymptomatic ESRD patients on maintenance HD were evaluated. Asymptomatic patients with neither history nor clinical evidence of cardiovascular disease were considered. A total of 31 ESRD patients were enrolled into the study and were submitted to Tc-99m SESTAMIBI myocardial gated- single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) stress test. All patients then received an aggressive medical regimen with statins, antiplatelet drugs, ACE inhibitors (ACE-I) and/or Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARB) and other hypotensive, glucose-lowering medications, sevelamer, calcium carbonate and calcitriol if required.
RESULTS: A significant reduction of coronary functional reserve was found in more than 50% of otherwise asymptomatic HD patients and may often be reverted by prolonged aggressive medical therapy. After a four-year follow-up under aggressive medical therapy no significant difference was observed neither in the incidence of conventional and emerging cardiovascular risk factors nor in cardiovascular outcome of patients with or without silent myocardial ischemia (SMI).
CONCLUSION: As cardiovascular disease (CVD) is by far the first cause of death in ESRD, an aggressive medical management may be highly advisable for the primary prevention of major adverse cardiac events in all HD patients despite the stress test evidence of inducible myocardial ischemia .

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