Improved biochemical variables, nutrient intake, and hormonal factors in slow nocturnal hemodialysis: a pilot study

Mayo Clin Proc. 1998 Nov;73(11):1035-45. doi: 10.4065/73.11.1035.


Objective: To determine whether slow nocturnal hemodialysis (SNHD) can be safely performed in patients with end-stage renal disease to improve the biochemical and clinical outcome.

Material and methods: We conducted an 8-week pilot study in nondiabetic adult patients, who underwent dialysis 6 nights per week for 8 hours each night. A dialysate flow rate of 300 mL/min and a blood flow rate of 250 mL/min, through an internal jugular dual-lumen venous catheter, were used. The equipment used was a COBE Centry System 3 dialysis machine and Fresenius F-80 (1.8 m2) or Baxter CT 190 (1.9 m2) dialyzers. Five patients were enrolled in the study.

Results: Two patients did not complete the study because of catheter-related infections--one at day 7 and one after 4 weeks of SNHD. All patients had improved blood pressure control, and no intradialytic adverse events occurred. Dietary intake improved, urea and creatinine levels significantly decreased, and weekly delivery of dialysate increased on SNHD. Potassium, chloride, beta 2-microglobulin, phosphorus, calcium, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol all improved on SNHD. Serum testosterone increased in the three men on SNHD, but parathyroid hormone, luteinizing hormone, and follicle-stimulating hormone remained unchanged. Erythropoietin levels increased on SNHD, despite no change in exogenous erythropoietin doses in three patients and discontinuation of administration of erythropoietin in one. The following biochemical factors did not change significantly: serum sodium, bicarbonate, vitamin B12, folate, alkaline phosphatase, total cholesterol, triglycerides, and albumin.

Conclusion: Higher doses of hemodialysis benefit nutrition, improve biochemical variables, and may improve many hormonal systems.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood Pressure
  • Body Weight
  • Electrolytes / blood*
  • Energy Intake*
  • Erythropoietin / blood
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics
  • Hemoglobins / metabolism
  • Hormones / blood*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / blood
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / physiopathology*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Renal Dialysis / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Water-Electrolyte Balance


  • Electrolytes
  • Hemoglobins
  • Hormones
  • Erythropoietin