JOURNAL ARTICLE

Body mass index and cardiovascular risk factors and biomarkers in hemodialysis patients

Maurizio Bossola, Stefania Giungi, Nicola Panocchia, Carlo Vulpio, Giovanna Luciani, Luigi Tazza
Journal of Nephrology 2008, 21 (2): 197-204
18446714

BACKGROUND: Being overweight and obesity are associated with improved survival in hemodialysis (HD) patients, based on mechanisms that are presently uncertain. We compared traditional and uremia-related cardiovascular risk factors in HD patients stratified according to their body mass index (BMI).

METHODS: One hundred sixteen HD patients were stratified into 4 groups according to the BMI: underweight (<18.5), normal weight (18.5-24.9), overweight (25.0-29.9) and obese (> or =30). Blood samples were obtained before the HD session to measure serum albumin, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, fibrinogen, ferritin, total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, apolipoprotein A-I and apolipoprotein B-100, apolipoprotein B (apoB) to apolipoprotein A (apoA) ratio and Lp(a) lipoprotein.

RESULTS: There were 3 underweight (excluded from the analysis), 58 normal weight, 35 overweight and 20 obese patients. Their mean age was 62.1 +/- 14.1 years. There were 68 men and 45 women. Mean dialytic age was 5.32 +/- 3.2 years. The mean BMI of the study population was 25.2 +/- 4.1. The prevalence of smoking habit was similar in the 3 groups (17.2%, 8.5% and 25%, respectively; p=0.28). The prevalence of hypertension was higher in overweight (77.1%) and obese (65%) patients than in leaner counterparts (53.4%), although the difference was not significant. Conversely, diabetes prevalence was significantly higher in overweight and obese patients (22.8% and 30%, respectively) than in normal weight patients (6.9%; p=0.02). The serum levels of total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, Lp(a) lipoprotein, apolipoprotein A-I, apolipoprotein B-100, and apoA/apoB ratio were similar in the 3 BMI groups. Triglycerides levels were significantly higher in obese (221.2 +/- 132.7 mg/dL) and overweight (230.5 +/- 119.3 mg/dL) patients than in those of normal weight (154.6 +/- 78.8 mg/dL; p=0.02). Most of the uremia-related cardiovascular risk factors (anemia, hyperparathyroidism, chronic inflammation) were comparable among BMI categories as well as the levels of C-reactive protein, fibrinogen and ferritin.

CONCLUSION: The present study suggests that almost all traditional and uremia-related cardiovascular risk factors do not differ significantly among different categories of BMI in hemodialysis patients.

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