J Am Soc Nephrol 2004 Jan;15(1):148-56
Department of Renal Medicine, Gosford Hospital, Gosford, Australia.
It is not known whether prevention of anemia among patients with chronic kidney disease would affect the development or progression of left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy. A randomized controlled trial was performed with 155 patients with chronic kidney disease (creatinine clearance, 15 to 50 ml/min), with entry hemoglobin concentrations ([Hb]) of 110 to 120 g/L (female patients) or 110 to 130 g/L (male patients). Patients were monitored for 2 yr or until they required dialysis; the patients were randomized to receive epoetin alpha as necessary to maintain [Hb] between 120 and 130 g/L (group A) or between 90 and 100 g/L (group B). [Hb] increased for group A (from 112 +/- 9 to 121 +/- 14 g/L, mean +/- SD) and decreased for group B (from 112 +/- 8 to 108 +/- 13 g/L) (P < 0.001, group A versus group B). On an intent-to-treat analysis, the changes in LV mass index for the groups during the 2-yr period were not significantly different (2.5 +/- 20 g/m(2) for group A versus 4.5 +/- 20 g/m(2) for group B, P = NS). There was no significant difference between the groups in 2-yr mean unadjusted systolic BP (141 +/- 14 versus 138 +/- 13 mmHg) or diastolic BP (80 +/- 6 versus 79 +/- 7 mmHg). The decline in renal function in 2 yr, as assessed with nuclear estimations of GFR, also did not differ significantly between the groups (8 +/- 9 versus 6 +/- 8 ml/min per 1.73 m(2)). In conclusion, maintenance of [Hb] above 120 g/L, compared with 90 to 100 g/L, had similar effects on the LV mass index and did not clearly affect the development or progression of LV hypertrophy. The maintenance of [Hb] above 100 g/L for many patients in group B might have been attributable to the relative preservation of renal function.