Sodium chloride vs. sodium bicarbonate for the prevention of contrast medium-induced nephropathy: a randomized controlled trial

Eur Heart J. 2012 Aug;33(16):2071-9. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehr501. Epub 2012 Jan 19.


Aims: The most effective regimen for the prevention of contrast-induced nephropathy (CIN) remains uncertain. Our purpose was to compare two regimens of sodium bicarbonate with 24 h sodium chloride 0.9% infusion in the prevention of CIN.

Methods and results: We performed a prospective, randomized trial between March 2005 and December 2009, including 258 consecutive patients with renal insufficiency undergoing intravascular contrast procedures. Patients were randomized to receive intravenous volume supplementation with either (A) sodium chloride 0.9% 1 mL/kg/h for at least 12h prior and after the procedure or (B) sodium bicarbonate (166 mEq/L) 3 mL/kg for 1 h before and 1 mL/kg/h for 6 h after the procedure or (C) sodium bicarbonate (166 mEq/L) 3 mL/kg over 20 min before the procedure plus sodium bicarbonate orally (500 mg per 10 kg). The primary endpoint was the change in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) within 48 h after contrast. Secondary endpoints included the development of CIN. The maximum change in eGFR was significantly greater in Group B compared with Group A {mean difference -3.9 [95% confidence interval (CI), -6.8 to -1] mL/min/1.73 m2, P = 0.009} and similar between groups C and B [mean difference 1.3 (95% CI, -1.7-4.3) mL/min/1.73 m(2), P = 0.39]. The incidence of CIN was significantly lower in Group A (1%) vs. Group B (9%, P = 0.02) and similar between Groups B and C (10%, P = 0.9).

Conclusion: Volume supplementation with 24 h sodium chloride 0.9% is superior to sodium bicarbonate for the prevention of CIN. A short-term regimen with sodium bicarbonate is non-inferior to a 7 h regimen. Identifier: NCT00130598.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Contrast Media / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Kidney Diseases / physiopathology
  • Kidney Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Renal Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Sodium Bicarbonate / administration & dosage*
  • Sodium Chloride / administration & dosage*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Contrast Media
  • Renal Agents
  • Sodium Chloride
  • Sodium Bicarbonate

Associated data