Background: Nonadherence among hemodialysis patients compromises dialysis delivery, which could influence patient morbidity and mortality. The Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study (DOPPS) provides a unique opportunity to review this problem and its determinants on a global level.
Methods: Nonadherence was studied using data from the DOPPS, an international, observational, prospective hemodialysis study. Patients were considered nonadherent if they skipped one or more sessions per month, shortened one or more sessions by more than 10 minutes per month, had a serum potassium level openface>6.0 mEq/L, a serum phosphate level openface>7.5 mg/dL (>2.4 mmol/L), or interdialytic weight gain (IDWG)>5.7% of body weight. Predictors of nonadherence were identified using logistic regression. Survival analysis used the Cox proportional hazards model adjusting for case-mix.
Results: Skipping treatment was associated with increased mortality [relative risk (RR) = 1.30, P = 0.01], as were excessive IDWG (RR = 1.12, P = 0.047) and high phosphate levels (RR = 1.17, P = 0.001). Skipping also was associated with increased hospitalization (RR = 1.13, P = 0.04), as were high phosphate levels (RR = 1.07, P = 0.05). Larger facility size (per 10 patients) was associated with higher odds ratios (OR) of skipping (OR = 1.03, P = 0.06), shortening (OR = 1.03, P = 0.05), and IDWG (OR = 1.02, P = 0.07). An increased percentage of highly trained staff hours was associated with lower OR of skipping (OR = 0.84 per 10%, P = 0.02); presence of a dietitian was associated with lower OR of excessive IDWG (OR = 0.75, P = 0.08).
Conclusion: Nonadherence was associated with increased mortality risk (skipping treatment, excessive IDWG, and high phosphate) and with hospitalization risk (skipping, high phosphate). Certain patient/facility characteristics also were associated with nonadherence.