Serum aluminium tied to uraemic pruritus during haemodialysis
Concentrations of aluminium in the serum may be correlated with uraemic pruritus (UP) development in patients receiving maintenance haemodialysis (HD), reports a recent study.
Researchers performed a cross-sectional analysis of 866 patients (mean age 56.18±13.59 years; 440 males) undergoing maintenance HD for a mean of 6.96±5.35 years. In this group, the median serum aluminium was 0.9 µg/dL and 21.8 percent (n=189) had UP. Serum aluminium in those with UP were significantly higher than in those without (p<0.001).
Using a threshold value of 2 µg/dL, researchers classified participants into those with high (n=119) or low (n=747) serum aluminium. The proportion of patients with UP was significantly higher in the former group (34.5 percent vs 19.8 percent; p=0.001).
Multivariate logistic regression analysis further showed that the log of serum aluminium concentration was a significant risk factor for UP development (odds ratio [OR], 5.64; 95 percent CI, 3.13–10.17; p<0.001). Moreover, having serum aluminium ≥2 µg/dL was also associated with a higher UP risk (OR, 2.38; 1.49–3.79; p<0.001).
Other potential risk factors included body mass index, serum levels of cholesterol, albumin and low-density lipoprotein, duration of haemodialysis, normalized protein catabolism rate, and comorbidities such as diabetes mellitus and hepatitis C virus infection. However, the significance of these were attenuated upon multivariable adjustments.
Limitations of the present study included its cross-sectional and single-centre design, as well as the lack of information regarding the aluminium content of the participants’ diets, said researchers. Further research is thus needed to determine the role of aluminium on UP development.