Survival among nocturnal home haemodialysis patients compared to kidney transplant recipients

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2009 Sep;24(9):2915-9. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfp295. Epub 2009 Jul 7.


Background: Kidney transplantation is the gold standard renal replacement therapy. Nocturnal haemodialysis (NHD) is an intensive dialysis modality (6-8 h/session, 3-7 sessions/week) associated with a significant improvement of clinical and biochemical parameters compared to conventional dialysis. To date, no studies have compared survival in patients treated with NHD and kidney transplantation.

Methods: Using data from two regional NHD programmes and the USRDS from 1994 to 2006, we performed a matched cohort study comparing survival between NHD and deceased and living donor kidney transplantation (DTX and LTX) by randomly matching NHD patients to transplant recipients in a 1:3:3 ratio. The independent association of treatment modality with survival was determined using Cox multivariate regression.

Results: The total study population consisted of 177 NHD patients matched to 1062 DTX and LTX recipients (total 1239 patients) followed for a maximum of 12.4 years. During the follow-up period, the proportion of deaths among NHD, DTX and LTX patients was 14.7%, 14.3% and 8.5%, respectively (P = 0.006). We found no difference in the adjusted survival between NHD and DTX (HR 0.87, 95% CI 0.50-1.51; NHD reference group), while LTX survival was better (HR 0.51, 95% CI 0.28-0.91).

Conclusions: These results indicate that NHD and DTX survival is comparable, and suggest that this intensive dialysis modality may be a bridge to transplantation or even a suitable alternative in the absence of LTX in the current era of growing transplant waiting lists and organ shortage.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Hemodialysis, Home / mortality*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / mortality
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Kidney Transplantation / mortality*
  • Living Donors
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ontario / epidemiology
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Survival Analysis
  • Tissue Donors