Looking at the sodium balance in dialysis patients
We are often requested to make observations on clinical studies that can benefit renal patients and these observations can be followed up by grant requests for financial support. One such project was a clinical study with Prof Andrew Davenport and Roohi Chhabra looking at sodium balance in dialysis patients so as to improve patient reported outcomes.
The leading cause of death in dialysis patients is cardiovascular disease. A key role of dialysis is to maintain sodium balance in the body. Not removing enough sodium leads to accumulation of fluid, high blood pressure, heart failure and stroke. Removing too much sodium on the other hand, can lead to low blood pressure on dialysis, cramps, dizziness and damage to the brain.
Our patients are often troubled by these symptoms as sodium balance is not fully understood in dialysis patients, due to its complexity. The aim was to study sodium balance in this cohort via clinical methods and via imaging, i.e., performing sodium MRI scans and assessing sodium stores in skin and tissues.
The aim is to better understand sodium removal in dialysis patients so that we can then use this knowledge to make dialysis an overall positive experience for our patients and minimise side effects of therapy that they very often experience.
The RFHKPA trustees carefully considered the potential benefits for fellow kidney patients and agreed to a grant of £5000 to enable this study to be carried out. This amount was matched by the Royal Free Charity.
To see an update on this research, please click the link below: