Clinical trial aims to slow bone loss in dialysis patients

September 5, 2017

Many people with chronic kidney disease rely on dialysis to perform some of the functions of a healthy kidney, like removing waste, maintaining safe levels of chemicals in the body and helping to control blood pressure. However, individuals who use dialysis experience very high death rates—the mortality rate is approximately 25 percent each year, which is higher than many cancers. Around 70 percent of these deaths are related to cardiovascular events, such as heart attack and stroke.

Cardiovascular problems in are not exactly the same as in the general population. They are related to calcification in the arteries of the heart, in the brain, and throughout the body. Approximately 80 percent of dialysis patients experience calcification that progresses aggressively. This calcification is caused by . Although everyone's body is continuously breaking down old bone and creating new bone, patients on dialysis cannot absorb or excrete the calcium generated through this process. The excess load of calcium then deposits itself in the soft tissues of the body, leading to .

Bone loss itself is also a health risk for dialysis patients, because it leads to bone and joint pain as well as increased , which are also associated with high mortality.

At UK, a new clinical trial is trying to treat bone loss and thereby reduce or stop the progression of calcification in dialysis patients. The study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, offers participants an opportunity to be treated for their bone loss using one of two FDA-approved (non-experimental) medications. Both medications are already in use in the . One medication is prescribed to patients who don't make enough new bone, and the other is for patients who destroy too much bone. Simple blood tests will determine which medication is best for each study participant. Non-invasive measurements of bone loss and calcification will be taken to determine the benefits of the medications.

You might be eligible to participate in this study if you are on dialysis and are found to have osteoporosis (bone loss). There is no cost to participants, and you will be reimbursed for travel expenses.

To learn more, please contact Nedda Hughes or Tara Spach at (859) 619-5304, or you can contact them by email at nkhugh1@uky.edu and/or tara.l.spach@uky.edu. You may also find more information at UKClinicalResearch.com.

Explore further: Hormone and bone tests may be indicative of dialysis patients' heart health

Related Stories

Hormone and bone tests may be indicative of dialysis patients' heart health

April 2, 2015
Bone loss may be a sign of poor heart health in patients on dialysis, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). Monitoring bone loss in dialysis patients ...

Drug may help prevent bone fractures in patients on dialysis

December 11, 2014
A drug that mimics calcium and lowers parathyroid levels may help prevent bone fractures in patients with kidney failure who are on dialysis, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American ...

Weight loss surgery's effects on bone marrow fat and bone mass

August 9, 2017
Bone marrow fat is thought to regulate bone metabolism, and high levels of marrow fat are seen in states of low bone mass, severe underweight, and diabetes. In a study of obese women undergoing gastric bypass surgery, increases ...

Blood pressure medications reduce stroke and heart attack in peritoneal dialysis patients

June 14, 2016
Two classes of blood pressure medications, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs), are associated with a 16% lower risk of strokes, heart attacks and death in patients ...

Growth hormone reverses growth problems in children with kidney failure

April 4, 2013
Growth hormone therapy can help reverse growth problems in children with kidney failure, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN). However, ...

Recommended for you

Ecosystem approach makes urinary tract infection more treatable

September 22, 2017
The biological term 'ecosystem' is not usually associated with urinary tract infections, but this should change according to Wageningen scientists.

Investigators may unlock mystery of how staph cells dodge the body's immune system

September 21, 2017
For years, medical investigators have tried and failed to develop vaccines for a type of staph bacteria associated with the deadly superbug MRSA. But a new study by Cedars-Sinai investigators shows how staph cells evade the ...

Superbug's spread to Vietnam threatens malaria control

September 21, 2017
A highly drug resistant malaria 'superbug' from western Cambodia is now present in southern Vietnam, leading to alarming failure rates for dihydroartemisinin (DHA)-piperaquine—Vietnam's national first-line malaria treatment, ...

Individualized diets for irritable bowel syndrome better than placebo

September 21, 2017
Patients with irritable bowel syndrome who follow individualized diets based on food sensitivity testing experience fewer symptoms, say Yale researchers. Their study is among the first to provide scientific evidence for this ...

A dose of 'wait-and-see' reduces unnecessary antibiotic use

September 21, 2017
Asking patients to take a 'wait-and-see' approach before having their antibiotic prescriptions filled significantly reduces unnecessary use, a University of Queensland study has shown.

Groundbreaking investigative effort identifies gonorrhea vaccine candidates

September 19, 2017
Researchers at Oregon State University have identified a pair of proteins that show promise as the basis for a gonorrhea vaccine.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.