Purpose of review: The optimal time at which to initiate chronic dialysis remains unknown. Using a contemporary knowledge translation approach (the knowledge-to-action framework), a pan-Canadian collaboration (CANN-NET) set out to study the scope of the problem, then develop and disseminate evidence-based guidelines addressing the timing of dialysis initiation. The purpose of this review is to summarize the key findings and describe the planned Canadian knowledge translation strategy for improving knowledge and practices pertaining to the timing dialysis initiation.
Recent findings: New research has provided considerable insights regarding the initiation of dialysis. A Canadian cohort study identified significant variation in the estimated glomerular filtration rate level at dialysis initiation, and a survey of providers identified related knowledge gaps that might be amenable to knowledge translation interventions. A recent knowledge synthesis/guideline concluded that early dialysis initiation is costly, and provides no measureable clinical benefits. A systematic knowledge translation intervention including a multifaceted approach may aid in reducing variation in practice and improving the quality of care.
Summary: Utilizing the knowledge-to-action framework, we identified practice variation and key barriers to the optimal timing for dialysis initiation that may be amenable to knowledge translation strategies.