Tenofovir-associated renal dysfunction in clinical practice: An observational cohort from western India

Indian J Sex Transm Dis AIDS. 2010 Jan;31(1):30-4. doi: 10.4103/0253-7184.68998.

Abstract

Background: Tenofovir (TDF) is preferred nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTI) for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus infection because of its potency and safety. Renal toxicity with TDF use is low and comparable with other NRTI in clinical trials, but there are many case studies and small case series of renal dysfunction with TDF.

Materials and methods: This is an observational longitudinal cohort of patients started on a TDF-based regimen from January 2007 to April 2010. Patients were evaluated at baseline and with every follow-up visit for serum creatinine and calculated creatinine clearance (Cockroft-Gault formula). In addition to this, the patients were also subjected to test for serum potassium, phosphorous and urine examinations as and when indicated. Renal dysfunction was defined as rise in serum creatinine to more than the upper level of normal (>1.2 mg%).

Results: Of 1,271 patients started on a TDF-containing antiretroviral treatment (ART) 83 (6.53%) developed renal dysfunction, of which 79 had impaired serum creatinine and five had Fanconi's syndrome. Renal dysfunction was more common with boosted a protease inhibitor (PI) (9.44%)-based regimen as compared to a non- nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) (5.01%)-based regimen (P = 0.003). The mean decline in creatinine clearance from baseline was 22.27 ml/min. The median time to develop renal dysfunction was 154 (15-935) days. Serum creatinine returned to normal in all the patients after stopping TDF. Five patients presented with features suggestive of Fanconi's syndrome without alteration in serum creatinine.

Conclusion: TDF-based treatment is associated with mild but reversible renal dysfunction. Patients receiving PI/r are at a higher risk of renal dysfunction compared to those receiving NNRTI-based ART. Clinicians should be adviced to have intensive renal monitoring, including creatinine clearance, urine examination, K+ and phosphate levels at baseline and during treatment with TDF.

Keywords: Antiretroviral therapy; nephrotoxicity; renal dysfunction; tenofovir.