An estimated glomerular filtration rate equation for the full age spectrum

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2016 May;31(5):798-806. doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfv454. Epub 2016 Feb 29.


Background: Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is accepted as the best indicator of kidney function and is commonly estimated from serum creatinine (SCr)-based equations. Separate equations have been developed for children (Schwartz equation), younger and middle-age adults [Chronic Kidney Disease Epidemiology Collaboration (CKD-EPI) equation] and older adults [Berlin Initiative Study 1 (BIS1) equation], and these equations lack continuity with ageing. We developed and validated an equation for estimating the glomerular filtration rate that can be used across the full age spectrum (FAS).

Methods: The new FAS equation is based on normalized serum creatinine (SCr/Q), where Q is the median SCr from healthy populations to account for age and sex. Coefficients for the equation are mathematically obtained by requiring continuity during the paediatric-adult and adult-elderly transition. Research studies containing a total of 6870 healthy and kidney-diseased white individuals, including 735 children, <18 years of age, 4371 adults, between 18 and 70 years of age, and 1764 older adults, ≥70 years of age with measured GFR (inulin, iohexol and iothalamate clearance) and isotope dilution mass spectrometry-equivalent SCr, were used for the validation. Bias, precision and accuracy (P30) were evaluated.

Results: The FAS equation was less biased [-1.7 (95% CI -3.4, -0.2) versus 6.0 (4.5, 7.5)] and more accurate [87.5% (85.1, 89.9) versus 83.8% (81.1, 86.5)] than the Schwartz equation for children and adolescents; less biased [5.0 (4.5, 5.5) versus 6.3 (5.9, 6.8)] and as accurate [81.6% (80.4, 82.7) versus 81.9% (80.7, 83.0)] as the CKD-EPI equation for young and middle-age adults; and less biased [-1.1 (-1.6, -0.6) versus 5.6 (5.1, 6.2)] and more accurate [86.1% (84.4, 87.7) versus 81.8% (79.7, 84.0)] than CKD-EPI for older adults.

Conclusions: The FAS equation has improved validity and continuity across the full age-spectrum and overcomes the problem of implausible eGFR changes in patients which would otherwise occur when switching between more age-specific equations.

Keywords: FAS eGFR equation; development and validation; healthy and kidney-diseased subjects.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers / analysis*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Kidney / physiopathology*
  • Kidney Function Tests
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / diagnosis*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / metabolism
  • Young Adult


  • Biomarkers