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Association of Patient-Reported Difficulty with Adherence with Achievement of Clinical Targets Among Hemodialysis Patients

Authors Snyder RL, Jaar BG, Lea JP, Plantinga LC

Received 14 August 2019

Accepted for publication 28 December 2019

Published 12 February 2020 Volume 2020:14 Pages 249—259


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Rachel L Snyder, 1 Bernard G Jaar, 2–5 Janice P Lea, 6 Laura C Plantinga 1, 6

1Department of Epidemiology, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA; 2Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA; 3Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA; 4Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA; 5Nephrology Center of Maryland, Baltimore, MD, USA; 6Department of Medicine, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA

Correspondence: Laura C Plantinga
Department of Medicine, Emory University, 1841 Clifton Road, Wesley Woods Health Center Room 552, Atlanta, GA 30329 Tel +1 404 727 3460
Fax +1 404 728 6425

Background: Non-adherence to dialysis recommendations is common and associated with poor outcomes. We used data from a cohort of in-center hemodialysis patients to determine whether patients’ reported difficulties with adherence were associated with achievement of clinical targets for treatment recommendations.
Patients and Methods: We included 799 in-center patients receiving hemodialysis from February 2010 to October 2016 at Emory Dialysis (Atlanta, GA, USA). Patient-reported difficulty with adherence (yes vs no) across multiple domains (coming to dialysis, completing dialysis sessions, fluid restrictions, diet restrictions, taking medications) was obtained from baseline social worker assessments. Achievement of clinical targets for coming to dialysis (missing ≥ 3 expected sessions), completing dialysis sessions (shortening > 3 sessions by ≥ 15 min), fluid restrictions (mean interdialytic weight gain ≥ 3 kg), diet restrictions (mean potassium ≥ 5.0 mEq/L, mean phosphate > 5.5 mg/dL), and taking medications (mean phosphate > 5.5 mg/dL) was estimated over the following 12 weeks, using electronic medical record data. Crude agreement was assessed, and multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the associations between these measures.
Results: Agreement between reported difficulty in adherence and failure to achieve clinical targets was generally poor across all domains (percent agreement: 52.9– 65.3%). After adjustment, patients reporting difficulty with fluid restrictions were 62% more likely to have mean interdialytic weight gain ≥ 3 kg than those not reporting difficulty (OR: 1.62, 95% CI: 1.08, 2.43). Patients reporting difficulty with coming to dialysis were 41% more likely to miss ≥ 3 expected dialysis sessions over 12 weeks (OR: 1.41, 95% CI: 0.96, 2.07); however, this association was not statistically significant. There were no significant associations between reported difficulty and failure to achieve clinical targets in other categories.
Conclusion: While reported difficulty with only fluid restrictions and coming to dialysis were associated with failure to achieve clinical targets in our study, the general lack of agreement between reported difficulty with adherence and failure to achieve clinical targets highlights a gap that could be explored to develop and target educational interventions aimed at increasing adherence among dialysis patients.

Keywords: dialysis, end-stage renal disease, visit adherence, diet, fluid restriction, medications

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