Cognitive disorders in patients with chronic kidney disease: Approaches to prevention and treatment

Eur J Neurol. 2023 Sep;30(9):2899-2911. doi: 10.1111/ene.15928. Epub 2023 Jun 29.


Background: Cognitive impairment is common in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), and early intervention may prevent the progression of this condition.

Methods: Here, we review interventions for the complications of CKD (anemia, secondary hyperparathyroidism, metabolic acidosis, harmful effects of dialysis, the accumulation of uremic toxins) and for prevention of vascular events, interventions that may potentially be protective against cognitive impairment. Furthermore, we discuss nonpharmacological and pharmacological methods to prevent cognitive impairment and/or minimize the latter's impact on CKD patients' daily lives.

Results: A particular attention on kidney function assessment is suggested during work-up for cognitive impairment. Different approaches are promising to reduce cognitive burden in patients with CKD but the availabe dedicated data are scarce.

Conclusions: There is a need for studies assessing the effect of interventions on the cognitive function of patients with CKD.

Keywords: chronic kidney disease; cognition; dialysis; glomerular filtration rate; vascular risk factors.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cognition
  • Cognition Disorders* / etiology
  • Cognition Disorders* / prevention & control
  • Cognitive Dysfunction* / etiology
  • Cognitive Dysfunction* / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Renal Dialysis / adverse effects
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic* / complications
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic* / therapy