Kidney Failure Patients Prone to GI Tract
THURSDAY, Jan. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Many kidney failure
patients experience bleeding in the upper gastrointestinal (GI)
tract, a problem that can cause serious health problems and even
early death, a new study shows.
The researchers said their findings show that more needs to be
done to prevent and treat upper GI bleeding -- which occurs in the
esophagus, stomach or first part of the intestine -- in kidney
They noted that kidney failure patients on dialysis are
particularly prone to upper GI bleeding.
For this study, the researchers examined data from nearly 1
million patients in the U.S. Renal Data System, which collects
information on most of the dialysis patients in the country.
The analysis revealed that rates for upper GI bleeding were
either 57 or 328 episodes per 1,000 kidney failure patients per
year, according to stringent and lenient definitions of what
qualifies as upper GI bleeding. That's more than 10 times higher
than the general population, according to the American Society of
Nephrology news release.
The study also found that nearly 12 percent of kidney failure
patients who had upper GI bleeding died within a month of bleeding,
but there was a significant decline in the death rate from 1998 to
The death rate fell from a little more than 12 percent in 1998
to 10.5 percent in 2007 according to the stringent definition of
upper GI bleeding, and from about 10 percent to 8 percent according
to the lenient definition.
Despite that decline -- which may be due to improvements in
medical care -- the dangers of upper GI bleeding in kidney failure
patients remain a substantial issue, said the Stanford University
School of Medicine researchers and colleagues.
The study appears online Jan. 19 in the
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.
The U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney
Diseases has more about
bleeding in the digestive tract.
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