Renal impairment and hypertension in brain tumor patients treated in childhood are mainly associated with cisplatin treatment

Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2005 Apr;44(4):363-9. doi: 10.1002/pbc.20272.


Background: This study was designed to evaluate the renal consequences of the treatment of brain tumor patients diagnosed in childhood.

Procedure: One hundred four primary brain tumor patients diagnosed before 17 years of age from 1983 to 1997 had been treated in Tampere University Hospital, Finland. Of the 80 survivors 52 (65.0%) were examined at a median age of 14.4 years (range 3.8-28.7) and median 6.0 years (range 1.2-14.8) after the last treatment. The main outcome measures were blood pressure (BP), renal function, and calcium metabolism.

Results: Eight patients (15.4%) were hypertensive. Elevated BP was observed especially after exposure both to cisplatin and cranial irradiation. Spinal radiation did not increase the risk of elevated BP. Other adverse effects were observed only in patients treated with cisplatin. Five out of 14 patients treated with cisplatin evinced renal glomerular dysfunction (GFR < 87 mL/min/1.73 m2) immediately after treatment. They had a high cumulative dose of cisplatin (490-880 mg/m2). Recovery from renal glomerular dysfunction was observed in one patient. Nine of 14 patients were hypomagnesemic at the close of cisplatin treatment. Thereafter the magnesium level decreased in 10/14 cases (P = 0.006). During the study 10/14 were hypomagnesemic (P < 0.001); one evinced severe symptomatic hypomagnesemia. Low plasma phosphate (P = 0.016) and potassium levels (P = 0.026), tubular proteinuria (P = 0.055), metabolic alkalosis (P = 0.071), and hyperuricemia (P = 0.114) were also more common in patients on cisplatin treatment.

Conclusions: Elevated BP is common among brain tumor patients treated in childhood. After cisplatin treatment renal glomerular dysfunction appears mostly to be permanent. Persistent and even progressive changes in renal tubular function are seen.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Brain Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cisplatin / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Finland / epidemiology
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / chemically induced*
  • Hypertension / epidemiology
  • Kidney Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Kidney Diseases / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Statistics, Nonparametric


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Cisplatin
  • Calcium