Relationship between mortality and use of sodium bicarbonate at the time of dialysis initiation: a prospective observational study

Hikaru Morooka, Junichiro Yamamoto, Akihito Tanaka, Daijo Inaguma, Shoichi Maruyama

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Background: Patients with chronic kidney disease often experience metabolic acidosis. Whether oral sodium bicarbonate can reduce mortality in patients with metabolic acidosis has been debated for years. Hence, this study was conducted to evaluate the utility of sodium bicarbonate in patients who will undergo dialysis therapy. In this study, we investigated the effect of oral sodium bicarbonate therapy on mortality in patients with end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) initiated on dialysis therapy. Methods: We conducted an observational study of patients when they started dialysis therapy. There were 17 centres participating in the Aichi Cohort Study of Prognosis in Patients Newly Initiated into Dialysis. Data were available on patients’ sex, age, use of sodium bicarbonate, drug history, medical history, vital data, and laboratory data. We investigated whether patients on oral sodium bicarbonate for more than three months before dialysis initiation had a better prognosis than those without sodium bicarbonate therapy. The primary outcome was defined as all-cause mortality. Results: The study included 1524 patients with chronic kidney disease who initiated dialysis between October 2011 and September 2013. Among them, 1030 were men and 492 women, with a mean age of 67.5 ± 13.1 years. Of these, 677 used sodium bicarbonate and 845 did not; 13.6% of the patients in the former group and 21.2% of those in the latter group died by March 2015 (p < 0.001). Even after adjusting for various factors, the use of sodium bicarbonate independently reduced mortality (p < 0.001). Conclusions: The use of oral sodium bicarbonate at the time of dialysis initiation significantly reduced all-cause mortality in patients undergoing dialysis therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number118
JournalBMC Nephrology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 12-2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nephrology


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