Introduction and aims: Stages 4 and 5 of chronic kidney disease (CKD) have always been considered hard to modify in their speed and evolution. We retrospectively evaluated our CKD stage 5 patients (from 01/1/2016 to 12/31/2018), with a view to analyzing their kidney function evolution.
Material and Methods: We included only patients with longer than 6 months follow-up and at least 4 clinical-laboratory controls that included measured Creatinine Clearance (ClCr) and estimated GFR with CKD-EPI (eGFR). We evaluated: the agreement between ClCr and eGFR through Bland-Altman analysis; progression rate, classified as fast (eGFR loss >5ml/min/year), slow (eGFR loss 1-5 ml/min/year) and non-progressive (eGFR loss <1 ml/min/year or eGFR increase). We also evaluated which clinical-laboratory parameters (diabetes, blood pressure control, use of ACEi/ARBs, ischemic myocardiopathy, peripheral obliterant arteriopathy (POA), proteinuria, hemoglobin, uric acid, PTH, phosphorus) were associated to the different eGFR progression classes by means of bivariate regression and multinomial multiple regression model.
Results: Measured CrCl and eGFR where often in agreement, especially for GFR values <12ml/min. The average slope of eGFR was -3.05 ±3.68 ml/min/1.73 m2/year. The progression of kidney function was fast in 17% of the patients, slow in 57.6%, non-progressive in 25.4%. At the bivariate analysis, a fast progression was associated with poor blood pressure control (p=0.038) and ACEi/ARBs use (p=0.043). In the multivariable model, only peripheral obliterative arteriopathy proved associated to an increased risk of fast progression of eGFR (relative risk ratio=5.97).
Discussion: Less than one fifth of our patients presented a fast GFR loss (>5 ml/min/year). The vast majority showed a slow progression, stabilisation or even an improvement. Despite the limits due to the small sample size, the data has encouraged us not to consider CKD stage 5 as an inexorable and short journey towards artificial replacement therapy.
Keywords: chronic kidney disease, CKD, disease progression, glomerular filtrate, chronic renal failure