Background: Malnutrition is an important cause of the excessive morbidity and mortality rate of dialysis patients. Frequent nocturnal home hemodialysis (NHHD) has many benefits compared with conventional thrice-weekly hemodialysis (CHD), due to the virtual absence of dietary restrictions and a much higher overall dialysis efficiency. In this observational study, we investigated whether these benefits of NHHD translate into an improved nutritional intake, with a special emphasis on protein intake.
Methods: We prospectively assessed the effect of the transition of CHD to NHHD on nutritional intake (5-day dietary intake journal), normalized protein catabolic rate, and anthropometric parameters in 15 consecutive patients who started NHHD in our center between 2004 and 2009 and completed at least 8 months of follow-up. Data were collected before the transition from CHD to NHHD and 4 and 8 months after the transition.
Results: Protein intake, as measured by both dietary intake journal and normalized protein catabolic rate, increased significantly after the transition from CHD to NHHD. Accordingly, phosphate intake increased significantly; however, serum phosphate levels did not increase, despite negligible phosphate binder use during NHHD. Body mass index and upper arm muscle circumference did not change significantly.
Conclusion: The transition from CHD to NHHD has a positive effect on nutritional intake, in particular, protein intake. NHHD should be considered in malnourished patients on CHD. (C) 2012 by the National Kidney Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved.