Background: Chronic kidney failure (CKF) patients on renal replacement therapies exhibit elevated levels of DNA lesions and this is directly related to high mortality.
Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the effect of neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) on genomic damage in CKF patients on conventional haemodialysis (HD).
Methods: Twenty-one patients with CKF on HD were randomized into control (CG =10) or neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMESG = 11) groups. NMES was applied on the quadriceps muscle during the HD session, three times a week, for 8 weeks in NMESG. DNA damage in blood was evaluated by the alkaline comet assay prior to follow-up, after 4 and 8 weeks of intervention.
Results: Intradialytic NMES in CKF patients induced a significant decrease in DNA damage after four [49.9 (3.68) vs 101.5 (6.53); p = 0.000] than eight [19.9 (2.07) vs 101.5 (6.53); p = 0.000] weeks compared to baseline. Genomic damage was also significantly less after four [NMESG: 49.9 (3.68) vs CG: 92.9 (12.61); p = 0.001] than after eight [NMESG: 19.9 (2.07) vs CG: 76.4 (11.15); p = 0.000] weeks compared to CG.
Conclusions: This study demonstrates for the first time that intradialytic NMES is able to reduce DNA damage in blood of CKF patients.
Keywords: Chronic kidney disease; DNA damage; electric stimulation therapy; haemodialysis.