Background: Racial differences in health outcomes in general are well documented; however, few studies examined the impact of East Asian and Indo Asian race on choice of dialytic modality and survival among patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
Methods: We compared the use of peritoneal dialysis (PD) and survival among East Asian, Indo Asian, and white patients with ESRD initiating dialysis therapy in Canada between January 1, 1990, and December 31, 2000.
Results: Of 10,338 patients, 5.7% were East Asian, 3.2% were Indo Asian, and 91% were white. After controlling for sociodemographics and comorbidities, East Asian and Indo Asian patients were significantly more likely to initiate dialysis therapy on PD compared with white patients (odds ratio, 1.63; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.36 to 1.96; odds ratio, 1.52; 95% CI, 1.21 to 1.93, respectively), with no difference in likelihood of technique failure. East Asian and Indo Asian patients had a lower risk for death after the initiation of dialysis therapy (irrespective of modality) compared with white patients, with adjusted hazard ratios of 0.66 (95% CI, 0.58 to 0.76) for East Asian patients and 0.63 (95% CI, 0.53 to 0.75) for Indo Asian patients. The survival benefit for East Asian and Indo Asian patients was similar in the subgroup that initiated dialysis therapy with PD.
Conclusion: We found that Asian patients with ESRD were more likely to initiate dialysis therapy using PD, with improved survival after the initiation of dialysis therapy, compared with white patients. Elucidation of factors in East Asian and Indo Asian ESRD populations that result in improved outcomes may have implications for ESRD treatment for other racial groups.