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Short term-efficacy and tolerability of Rheocarna, a novel direct hemoperfusion adsorptive column, for chronic limb-threatening ischemia in dialysis patients: A single-center case series.

INTRODUCTION: With population aging and lifestyle changes, the number of patients with chronic limb-threatening ischemia (CLTI) is increasing, and refractory or recurrent lesions are more common, especially in chronic dialysis patients. In March 2021, a new type of adsorptive cellulose bead column immobilized with dextran sulfate and L-tryptophan for direct hemoperfusion (DHP) was approved by Japan's medical insurance system as a treatment for CLTI.

METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed 17 cases of CLTI in dialysis patients treated with DHP using the novel column (Rheocarna) (DHP-R) at our hospital from May 2021 to October 2022. The short-term of efficacy of DHP-R was judged qualitatively by the foot care team every 2 weeks based on the assessment of skin color, warmth, ulcer epithelialization or shrinkage of the ulcer area, and foot pain. The final judgment of efficacy was made after the final DHP-R session.

RESULTS: The median age of patients was 66 years, the median dialysis duration was 10 years, 15 cases (88%) were male, and 15 cases (88%) had diabetes. The median total number of sessions was eight. In comparing the groups in which DHP-R was effective and ineffective, there was no significant difference in any factors including patient background data (i.e., age, diabetes, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, hemoglobin, dialysis duration, etc.), type of anticoagulants, and presence of episodes of blood pressure drop or circuit clotting during session. Three cases with symptomatic hypotension during the session and two cases with circuit clotting that did not improve with increased heparin dose all resolved immediately after changing the anticoagulant from heparin to nafamostat mesylate (NM).

CONCLUSION: Identification of patients' characteristics in which DHP-R is favorable and some reliable index that allow a rapid decision to continue DHP-R are needed. In addition, validating whether the use of NM as anticoagulant affects the efficacy of DHP-R for CTLI treatment remains a challenge to resolve.

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