The effects of dialysis on brain water and EEG in stable chronic uremia

Am J Kidney Dis. 1987 Jun;9(6):462-9. doi: 10.1016/s0272-6386(87)80072-0.


Cerebral edema in uremic animals and humans, as well as an EEG deterioration in humans, has been reported after dialysis. Both are manifestations of the dialysis disequilibrium syndrome (DDS). This study was designed to analyze the changes induced by dialysis in the EEG pattern (spectral analysis), in the cerebral hydration, and ventricular size (computed tomography [CT] of the brain) in a group of 11 stable uremic patients. They volunteered for a randomized crossover study of 4 months each of standard hemodialysis (HD) and hypertonic hemodiafiltration (H HDF). H HDF is a dialysis technique that is shorter and more efficient than HD. An EEG recording, a CT scan of the brain, and blood biochemistry were performed before and after a HD (four hours, blood flow rate 250 mL/min) and a H HDF run (three hours, blood flow rate 400 mL/min). Approximately 6 weeks of stabilization on each treatment were allowed before these studies. No difference was found in the density of seven specific brain structures (base and apical cuts), when comparing pre- v post-HD, pre- v post-H HDF, pre- HD v pre-H HDF, and post-HD v post-H HDF. Furthermore, no difference was evident either in the bicaudate diameter of the lateral ventricles or in the transverse diameter of the third ventricle. In addition, no significant in-between- and within-treatment difference was observed when analyzing the EEG% power (3-7/7-13 Hz) data. In conclusion, this study shows neither a postdialysis change in brain density and ventricular size nor a postdialysis EEG deterioration in a group of stable uremic patients undergoing both a rapid and a standard dialysis treatment.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood*
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Brain Diseases / etiology*
  • Brain Edema / etiology*
  • Brain Edema / physiopathology
  • Cerebral Ventricles / pathology
  • Chronic Disease
  • Electroencephalography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertonic Solutions
  • Male
  • Renal Dialysis / adverse effects*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Ultrafiltration*
  • Uremia / physiopathology*


  • Hypertonic Solutions