Background: Volume overload and depletion both lead to high morbidity and mortality. Achieving euvolemia is a challenge in patients with end stage kidney disease on hemodialysis (HD). Blood volume analysis (BVA) uses radiolabeled albumin to determine intravascular blood volume (BV). The measured BV is compared to an ideal BV (validated in healthy controls). We hypothesized that BVA could be used in HD to evaluate the adequacy of the current clinically prescribed “estimated dry weight” (EDW) and to titrate EDW in order to improve overall volume status. We were also interested in the reproducibility of BVA results in end stage kidney disease.

Methods: Twelve adults on chronic HD were recruited; 10 completed the study. BVA (Daxor, New York, NY, USA) was used to measure BV at baseline. EDW was kept the same if the patient was deemed to be euvolemic by BVA otherwise, the prescribed EDW was changed with the aim that measured BV would match ideal BV. A second BVA measurement was done 1–3 months later in order to measure BV again.

Results: Based on BVA, 6/10 patients were euvolemic at baseline and 5/10 were euvolemic at the second measurement. When comparing patients who had their prescribed EDW changed after the initial BVA to those who did not, both groups had similar differences between measured and ideal BV (P = 0.75). BV values were unchanged at the second measurement (P = 0.34) and there was no linear correlation between BV change and weight change (r2 = 0.08).

Conclusions: This pilot study is the first longitudinal measurement of BVA in HD patients. It revealed that changing weight did not proportionally change intravascular BV. BV remained stable for 1–3 months. BVA may not be helpful in clinically stable HD patients but studies on patients with hemodynamic instability and uncertain volume status are needed.

Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02717533), first registered February 4, 2015.

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Published in BMC Nephrology, v. 20, article no. 47, p. 1-9.

© The Author(s). 2019

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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The data generated and analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

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