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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 1998 June;50(2):133-8


language: Italian

Heart failure refractory to medical therapy. Nephrological approach

Ragazzoni E. 1, Sacco A. 1, Cusinato S. 1, Agliata S. 1, Schweiger K. 1, Cavagnino A. 1, Zanetta M. 2, Cardillo V. 3, Corrà U. 4

1 Ospedale - Borgomanero (Novara), Servizio di Nefrologia e Dialisi; 2 Ospedale - Borgomanero (Novara), Servizio di Cardiologia; 3 Ospedale - Borgomanero (Novara), Servizio di Rianimazione; 4 Clinica del Lavoro - Veruno (Novara), Servizio di Cardiologia


Background. The congestive heart failure (IV cl. NYHA) refractory to medical therapy, can be treated with ultrafiltrative method such as extracorporeal ultrafiltration (UF), intermittent veno-venosus hemofiltration, intermittent peritoneal dialysis (IPD) or chronic ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD).
Methods. Sixty-one patients suffering from SCC have been managed by combining medical therapy with ultrafiltrative treatment.
Results. 28% (17 patients) died within a week from ultrafiltrative therapy beginning. 39% (24 patients) took up to respond to medical therapy (responders). 33% (20 patients) didn’t give a proper response to pharmacological therapy (non responders), therefore a ultrafiltration program with chronic ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD) has been undertaken.
Among ultrafiltrative methods applied to patients, IVVH is the most effective. Clinical parameters analysis, relevant to dehydration acute phase, points out:
— an evident loss of corporeal weight between dehydration pre-post phases in all 3 groups, with statistically significant results;
— a SAP values reduction between the beginning and the end of treatment in all 3 groups;
— a PAD values reduction in the group of deceased and non responders. This value remains stable in responders group.
Non responders patients, inserted in a ultrafiltration program with CAPD present the following survival rate:
— 55%: 6 months;
— 35%: 1 year;
— 15%: 4 years.
These patients maintain a good self-management in 50%, sufficient in 35% and totally partner-dependent in 15%.
Conclusions. Ultrafiltration method together with pharmacological therapy allows a resetting of neuro-endocrine and electrolytic system in refractory congestive heart failure patients and a recovery of a pharmacological response. Without such a response a cardio-circulatory balance can be maintained through a CAPD method.

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