Importance: Among patients with hyperphosphatemia undergoing dialysis, it is unclear whether non-calcium-based phosphate binders are more effective than calcium-based binders for reducing cardiovascular events.
Objective: To determine whether lanthanum carbonate reduces cardiovascular events compared with calcium carbonate in patients with hyperphosphatemia at risk of vascular calcification undergoing hemodialysis.
Design, setting, and participants: Open-label, randomized, parallel-group clinical trial with blinded end point adjudication performed in 2374 patients with chronic kidney disease from 273 hemodialysis facilities in Japan. Eligible patients had hyperphosphatemia and 1 or more risk factors for vascular calcification (ie, ≥65 years, postmenopausal, diabetes). Enrollment occurred from November 2011 to July 2014; follow-up ended June 2018.
Interventions: Patients were randomized to receive either lanthanum carbonate (n = 1154) or calcium carbonate (n = 1155) and titrated to achieve serum phosphate levels of between 3.5 mg/dL and 6.0 mg/dL.
Main outcomes and measures: The primary outcome was a composite cardiovascular event (cardiovascular death, nonfatal myocardial infarction or stroke, unstable angina, transient ischemic attack, or hospitalization for heart failure or ventricular arrhythmia). Secondary outcomes included overall survival, secondary hyperparathyroidism-free survival, hip fracture-free survival, and adverse events.
Results: Among 2309 randomized patients (median age, 69 years; 40.5% women), 1851 (80.2%) completed the trial. After a median follow-up of 3.16 years, cardiovascular events occurred in 147 of 1063 patients in the lanthanum calcium group and 134 of 1072 patients in the calcium carbonate group (incidence rate, 4.80 vs 4.30 per 100 person-years; difference 0.50 per 100 person-years [95% CI, -0.57 to 1.56]; hazard ratio [HR], 1.11 [95%, CI, 0.88 to 1.41], P = .37). There were no significant differences in all-cause death (difference, 0.43 per 100 person-years [95% CI, -0.63 to 1.49]; HR, 1.10 [95% CI, 0.88 to 1.37]; P = .42) or hip fracture (difference, 0.10 per 100 person-years [95% CI, -0.26 to 0.47]; HR, 1.21 [95% CI, 0.62 to 2.35]; P = .58). The lanthanum carbonate group had an increased risk of cardiovascular death (difference, 0.61 per 100 person-years [95% CI, 0.02 to 1.21]; HR, 1.51 [95% CI, 1.01 to 2.27]; P = .045) and secondary hyperparathyroidism (difference, 1.34 [95% CI, 0.49 to 2.19]; HR, 1.62 [95% CI, 1.19 to 2.20]; P = .002). Adverse events occurred in 282 (25.7%) in the lanthanum carbonate group and 259 (23.4%) in the calcium carbonate groups.
Conclusions and relevance: Among patients undergoing hemodialysis with hyperphosphatemia and at least 1 vascular calcification risk factor, treatment of hyperphosphatemia with lanthanum carbonate compared with calcium carbonate did not result in a significant difference in composite cardiovascular events. However, the event rate was low, and the findings may not apply to patients at higher risk.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01578200; UMIN Clinical Trial Registry Identifier: UMIN000006815.