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SAMJ: South African Medical Journal

On-line version ISSN 2078-5135
Print version ISSN 0256-9574


MUDI, A; DICKENS, C; LEVY, C  and  BALLOT, D. Cardiovascular risk factors and mortality in children with chronic kidney disease. SAMJ, S. Afr. med. j. [online]. 2017, vol.107, n.8, pp.710-714. ISSN 2078-5135.

BACKGROUND. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) begins early in children with chronic kidney disease (CKD), and its progression is determined by the presence of single or multiple cardiovascular risk factors (CVRFs). OBJECTIVE. To determine the prevalence of CVRFs in children with CKD and their association with mortality in children on chronic dialysis. METHODS. This comparative cross-sectional study recruited children aged 5 - 18 years with all stages of CKD. All patients had a short history taken along with a physical examination, and their blood samples were assessed for serum creatinine, urea, albumin, calcium, phosphorus, parathyroid hormone, alkaline phosphatase, total cholesterol (TC), haemoglobin and C-reactive protein. Urine samples were also assessed for proteinuria. RESULTS. One hundred and six children who met the study criteria were recruited, 34 with CKD I, 36 with CKD II - IV and 36 with CKD V (dialysis). The overall median age was 11 years (range 8 - 14), and the male/female ratio was 2.1:1. The most common CVRF was anaemia (39.6%). The rate of anaemia was higher in the dialysis group than in the CKD II - IV and CKD I groups (77.8%, 33.3% and 5.9%, respectively). Other CVRFs detected were hypertension, proteinuria, hypercholesterolaemia and dysregulated mineral bone metabolism. Seven deaths were recorded in the dialysis group during the study period. Severe hypertension and intracranial bleeding were the most common causes of death. Modifiable risk factors such as increased TC and decreased albumin levels were more common than other CVRFs in the dialysis patients who died. CONCLUSIONS. CVRFs may be present in early CKD, even before the decline in GFR. Routine screening for CVRFs, along with timely intervention, may prevent the progression of CVD and mortality later in life.

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