Hospitalizations before and after initiation of chronic hemodialysis. Academic Article uri icon


  • Hospitalization rate is high in patients on chronic hemodialysis (HD). We investigated whether initiation of HD changes the rate and length of hospitalization. We analyzed hospitalizations in HD patients in one hospital over 15 years. We compared annual rate and length of hospitalizations, both presented as mean (95% confidence interval [CI]) between the pre-HD and HD period. Three hundred ninety-two patients, 98% men, 59% diabetic, and 66.3 ± 11.2 years old at the onset of HD, had 1016 hospitalizations in the pre-HD period (60.0 ± 42.9 months) and 1627 hospitalizations in the HD period (32.5 ± 25.9 months). Higher values were found in the HD than the pre-HD period for rate, (pre-HD 0.557 [95% CI 0.473-0.611], HD 2.198 [95% CI 1.997-2.399] admissions/[patient-year], P<0.001) and length (pre-HD 4.63 [95% CI 3.71-5.55], HD 28.07 [95% CI 23.55-32.59] days/patient-year], P<0.001) of hospitalizations for all causes, cardiac disease, infections, vascular access, peripheral vascular disease, metabolic disturbances, gastrointestinal diseases, and miscellaneous conditions, mainly respiratory illness and malignancy. Similar differences were found when we compared the year before and the year after the start of HD. Diabetics had higher all cause rate and length of hospitalizations than non-diabetics in the pre-HD and HD periods. The rate and length of hospitalizations was higher in the HD than the pre-HD period for both HD-specific conditions and conditions encountered in both HD and general populations. Study of factors specific to HD that may affect these conditions should constitute the first step toward improving the morbidity of patients on HD.© 2011 The Authors. Hemodialysis International © 2011 International Society for Hemodialysis.

publication date

  • January 1, 2011