Background: The aim of this study is to evaluate the association between acute serum creatinine changes in acute renal failure (ARF), before specialized treatment begins, and in-hospital mortality, recovery of renal function, and overall mortality at 6 months, on an equal degree of ARF severity, using the RIFLE criteria, and comorbid illnesses.
Methods: Prospective cohort study of 1008 consecutive patients who had been diagnosed as having ARF, and had been admitted in an university-affiliated hospital over 10 years. Demographic, clinical information and outcomes were measured. After that, 646 patients who had presented enough increment in serum creatinine to qualify for the RIFLE criteria were included for subsequent analysis. The population was divided into two groups using the median serum creatinine change (101%) as the cut-off value. Multivariate non-conditional logistic and linear regression models were used.
Results: A >or= 101% increment of creatinine respect to its baseline before nephrology consultation was associated with significant increase of in-hospital mortality (35.6% vs. 22.6%, p < 0.001), with an adjusted odds ratio of 1.81 (95% CI: 1.08-3.03). Patients who required continuous renal replacement therapy in the >or= 101% increment group presented a higher increase of in-hospital mortality (62.7% vs 46.4%, p = 0.048), with an adjusted odds ratio of 2.66 (95% CI: 1.00-7.21). Patients in the >or= 101% increment group had a higher mean serum creatinine level with respect to their baseline level (114.72% vs. 37.96%) at hospital discharge. This was an adjusted 48.92% (95% CI: 13.05-84.79) more serum creatinine than in the < 101% increment group.
Conclusion: In this cohort, patients who had presented an increment in serum level of creatinine of >or= 101% with respect to basal values, at the time of nephrology consultation, had increased mortality rates and were discharged from hospital with a more deteriorated renal function than those with similar Liano scoring and the same RIFLE classes, but with a < 101% increment. This finding may provide more information about the factors involved in the prognosis of ARF. Furthermore, the calculation of relative serum creatinine increase could be used as a practical tool to identify those patients at risk, and that would benefit from an intensive therapy.