Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of haemodialysis on plasma chromogranin A (CgA) concentration and to assess the relationship between CgA, blood pressure, occurrence of intradialytic hypotension episodes and residual renal function, respectively.
Methods: The study included 38 chronic haemodialysis patients (24 M, 14 F; mean age 56.2+/-13.6 years). Plasma CgA and blood pressure were measured before and after a mid-week dialysis. Control group included 10 age- and sex-matched healthy subjects.
Results: Plasma CgA levels were on average 50-fold higher in HD patients than in the controls (699+/-138 vs. 14+/-6 U/L). In HD patients plasma CgA corrected for ultrafiltration rates significantly increased (to 836+/-214 U/L, P<0.001) at the end of dialysis procedure. In patients with (n=8) and without frequent symptomatic intradialytic hypotension episodes predialysis values of CgA were similar (701+/-169 vs. 698+/-132 U/L) but post-dialysis were significantly lower in the former group (746+/-312 vs. 860+/-177 U/L; P=0.03) despite a similar rate of ultrafiltration (2675+/-1009 and 2583+/-1311 ml, respectively). Accordingly, in patients with intradialytic hypotension an increase of plasma CgA during dialysis was also much lower than in patients without hypotension (45+/-81 vs. 163+/-144 U/L; P=0.001).
Conclusions: CgA undergoes marked accumulation in renal failure. The increase of plasma CgA during dialysis is impaired in subjects with intradialytic hypotension episodes, which confirms the role of autonomic dysfunction in the pathogenesis of this complication.