Risk of infection in roxadustat treatment for anemia in patients with chronic kidney disease: A systematic review with meta-analysis and trial sequential analysis
Frontiers in pharmacology. 2022;13:967532
Background: Many studies demonstrated that roxadustat (FG-4592) could increase hemoglobin (Hb) levels effectively in anemia patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). However, its safety remains controversial. This study aims to explore the risk of infection for CKD patients treated with roxadustat, especially focused on sepsis. Methods: We thoroughly searched for the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) comparing treatment with roxadustat versus erythropoiesis stimulating agents (ESAs) or placebo in PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, ClinicalTrials.gov, European Union Clinical Trials Register. Both on and not on dialysis anemia patients with CKD were included. Primary outcomes contained the incidence rates of sepsis. Secondary outcomes included infection-related consequences (septic shock and other infection events), general safety outcomes [all-cause mortality, treatment-emergent adverse events (TEAEs) and treatment-emergent serious adverse events (TESAEs)] and iron parameters. Moreover, a trial sequential analysis (TSA) was conducted to assess if the results were supposed to be a robust conclusion. Results: Eighteen RCTs (n = 11,305) were included. Overall, the incidence of sepsis (RR: 2.42, 95% CI [1.50, 3.89], p = 0.0003) and cellulitis (RR: 2.07, 95% CI [1.24, 3.44], p = 0.005) were increased in the roxadustat group compared with placebo group. In non-dialysis-dependent (NDD) CKD patients, the incidence of cellulitis (RR 2.01, 95% CI [1.23, 3.28], p = 0.005) was significantly higher in roxadustat group than that in the ESAs or placebo group. Both groups showed similar results in the incidence of septic shock (RR 1.29, 95% CI [0.86, 1.94], p = 0.22). A significant increased risk of all-cause mortality [risk ratios (RR): 1.15, 95% confidence interval (CI) [1.05, 1.26], p = 0.002] was found in roxadustat treatment, and TSA confirmed the result. Compared with ESAs or placebo, both the incident rates of TEAEs (RR:1.03, 95% CI [1.01, 1.04], p = 0.008) and TESAEs (RR: 1.06, 95% CI [1.02, 1.11], p = 0.002) were significantly increased in roxadustat group. As for iron parameters, changes from baseline (Δ) of hepcidin (MD: -26.46, 95% CI [-39.83, -13.09], p = 0.0001), Δ ferritin and Δ TSAT were remarkably lower in the roxadustat group, while Δ Hb, Δ iron and Δ TIBC increased significantly versus those in ESAs or placebo group. Conclusion: We found evidence that incidence rates of sepsis and cellulitis are higher in roxadustat group compared with placebo. This may be the result of improved iron homeostasis. The risk of all-cause mortality, TEAEs and TESAEs in CKD patients also increased in patients treated with roxadustat. We need more clinical and mechanistic studies to confirm whether roxadustat really causes infection.
Darbepoetin alfa injection versus epoetin alfa injection for treating anemia of Chinese hemodialysis patients with chronic kidney failure: A randomized, open-label, parallel-group, non-inferiority Phase III trail
Chronic diseases and translational medicine. 2022;8(1):59-70
BACKGROUND Erythropoietin is a glycoprotein that mainly regulates erythropoiesis. In patients with chronic renal failure with anemia, darbepoetin alfa can stimulate erythropoiesis, correct anemia, and maintain hemoglobin levels. This study was designed to demonstrate the efficacy and safety of darbepoetin alfa injections as being not inferior to epoetin alfa injections (Recombinant Human Erythropoietin injection, rHuEPO) when maintaining hemoglobin (Hb) levels within the target range (10.0-12.0 g/dL) for the treatment of renal anemia. METHODS Ninety-five patients were enrolled in this study from April 15, 2013 to April 10, 2014 at 25 sites. In this study, patients (n = 95) aged 18-70 years were randomized into a once per week intravenous darbepoetin alfa group (n = 56) and a twice or three times per week intravenous epoetin alfa group (n = 39) for 28 weeks, who had anemia with hemoglobin levels between 6 g/dL and 10 g/dL due to chronic kidney disease (CKD) and were undergoing hemodialysis or hemofiltration with ESA-naive (erythropoiesis stimulating agent-naive). The primary efficacy profile was the mean Hb level (the non-inferiority margin was -1.0 g/dL, week 21-28); the secondary efficacy profiles were the Hb increase rate (week 0-4), the target Hb achievement cumulative rate and time, the change trends of the Hb levels, and the target Hb maintenance ratio. Adverse events (AEs) were observed and compared, and the efficacy and safety were analyzed between the two treatment groups. Additionally, the frequencies of dose adjustments between the darbepoetin alfa and epoetin alfa groups were compared during the treatment period. SAS® software version 9.2 was used to perform all statistical analyses. Descriptive statistics were used for all efficacy, safety, and demographic variable analyses, including for the primary efficacy indicators. RESULTS The mean Hb level was 11.3 g/dL in the darbepoetin alfa group and 10.7 g/dL in the epoetin alfa group, respectively; the difference of the lower limits of the 95% confidence intervals (CI) between the two groups was 0.1 g/dL (>-1.0 g/dL), and non-inferiority was proven; the Hb levels started to increase in the first four weeks at a similar increase rate; no obvious differences were observed between the groups in the target Hb achievement cumulative rates, and the Hb levels as well as the target Hb level maintenance rate changed over time. The incidence of AEs was 62.5% in the darbepoetin alfa group and 76.9% in the epoetin alfa group. All the adverse events observed in the study were those commonly associated with hemodialysis. CONCLUSION Darbepoetin alfa intravenously once per week can effectively increase Hb levels and maintain the target Hb levels well, which makes it not inferior to epoetin alfa intravenously twice or three times per week. Darbepoetin alfa shows an efficacy and safety comparable to epoetin alfa for the treatment of renal anemia.
Roxadustat Versus Epoetin Alfa for Treating Anemia in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease on Dialysis: Results from the Randomized Phase 3 ROCKIES Study
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology : JASN. 2022;33(4):850-866
BACKGROUND Concerns regarding cardiovascular safety with current treatments for anemia in patients with dialysis-dependent (DD)-CKD have encouraged the development of alternatives. Roxadustat, an oral hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor, stimulates erythropoiesis by increasing endogenous erythropoietin and iron availability. METHODS In this open-label phase 3 study, patients with DD-CKD and anemia were randomized 1:1 to oral roxadustat three times weekly or parenteral epoetin alfa per local clinic practice. Initial roxadustat dose depended on erythropoiesis-stimulating agent dose at screening for patients already on them and was weight-based for those not on them. The primary efficacy end point was mean hemoglobin change from baseline averaged over weeks 28‒52 for roxadustat versus epoetin alfa, regardless of rescue therapy use, tested for noninferiority (margin, -0.75 g/dl). Adverse events (AEs) were assessed. RESULTS Among 2133 patients randomized (n=1068 roxadustat, n=1065 epoetin alfa), mean age was 54.0 years, and 89.1% and 10.8% were on hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis, respectively. Mean (95% confidence interval) hemoglobin change from baseline was 0.77 (0.69 to 0.85) g/dl with roxadustat and 0.68 (0.60 to 0.76) g/dl with epoetin alfa, demonstrating noninferiority (least squares mean difference [95% CI], 0.09 [0.01 to 0.18]; P<0.001). The proportion of patients experiencing ≥1 AE and ≥1 serious AE was 85.0% and 57.6% with roxadustat and 84.5% and 57.5% with epoetin alfa, respectively. CONCLUSIONS Roxadustat effectively increased hemoglobin in patients with DD-CKD, with an AE profile comparable to epoetin alfa. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRY NAME AND REGISTRATION NUMBER Safety and Efficacy Study of Roxadustat to Treat Anemia in Patients With Chronic Kidney Disease, on Dialysis. CLINICALTRIALS gov Identifier: NCT02174731.
Predictors of iron versus erythropoietin responsiveness in anemic hemodialysis patients
Hemodialysis international. International Symposium on Home Hemodialysis. 2022
Anemia protocols for hemodialysis patients usually titrate erythropoietin (ESA) according to hemoglobin and iron according to a threshold of ferritin, with variable response seen. A universally optimum threshold for ferritin may be incorrect, and another view is that ESA and iron are alternative anemia treatments, which should be selected based on the likely response to each. Hemodialysis patients developing moderate anemia were randomised to treatment with either an increase in ESA or a course of intravenous iron. Over 2423 patient-months in 197 patients, there were 133 anemia episodes with randomized treatment. Treatment failure was seen in 20/66 patients treated with ESA and 20/67 patients treated with iron (30.3 vs. 29.9%, p = 1.0). Successful ESA treatment was associated with lower C-reactive protein (13.5 vs. 28.6 mg/L, p = 0.038) and lower previous ESA dose (6621 vs. 9273 μg/week, p = 0.097). Successful iron treatment was associated with lower reticulocyte hemoglobin (33.8 vs. 35.5 pg, p = 0.047), lower hepcidin (91.4 vs. 131.0 μg/ml, p = 0.021), and higher C-reactive protein (29.5 vs. 12.6 mg/L, p = 0.085). A four-variable iron preference score was developed to indicate the more favorable treatment, which in a retrospective analysis reduced treatment failure to 17%. Increased ESA and iron are equally effective, though treatment failure occurs in almost 30%. Baseline variables including hepcidin can predict treatment response, and a four-variable score shows promise in allowing directed treatment with improved response rates.
Erythropoietic effects of vadadustat in patients with anemia associated with chronic kidney disease
American journal of hematology. 2022
Patients with chronic kidney disease develop anemia largely because of inappropriately low erythropoietin production and insufficient iron available to erythroid precursors. In four phase 3, randomized, open-label, clinical trials in dialysis-dependent and non-dialysis-dependent patients with chronic kidney disease and anemia, the hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor, vadadustat, was non-inferior to the erythropoiesis-stimulating agent, darbepoetin alfa, in increasing and maintaining target hemoglobin concentrations. In these trials, vadadustat increased the concentrations of serum erythropoietin, the numbers of circulating erythrocytes, and the numbers of circulating reticulocytes. Achieved hemoglobin concentrations were similar in patients treated with either vadadustat or darbepoetin alfa, but compared with patients receiving darbepoetin alfa, those receiving vadadustat had erythrocytes with increased mean corpuscular volume and mean corpuscular hemoglobin, while the red cell distribution width was decreased. Increased serum transferrin concentrations, as measured by total iron-binding capacity, combined with stable serum iron concentrations, resulted in decreased transferrin saturation in patients randomized to vadadustat compared with patients randomized to darbepoetin alfa. The decreases in transferrin saturation were associated with relatively greater declines in serum hepcidin and ferritin in patients receiving vadadustat compared with those receiving darbepoetin alfa. These results for serum transferrin saturation, hepcidin, ferritin, and erythrocyte indices were consistent with improved iron availability in the patients receiving vadadustat. Thus, overall, vadadustat had beneficial effects on three aspects of erythropoiesis in patients with anemia associated with chronic kidney disease: increased endogenous erythropoietin production, improved iron availability to erythroid cells, and increased reticulocytes in the circulation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Efficacy and Safety of Daprodustat for Treatment of Anemia of Chronic Kidney Disease in Incident Dialysis Patients: A Randomized Clinical Trial
JAMA internal medicine. 2022
IMPORTANCE Daprodustat, a hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor, is being evaluated as an oral alternative to conventional erythropoiesis-stimulating agent (ESA) therapy. Few studies of anemia treatment in an incident dialysis (ID) population have been reported. OBJECTIVE To evaluate the efficacy and safety of daprodustat vs darbepoetin alfa in treating anemia of chronic kidney disease in ID patients. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS This prospective, randomized, open-label clinical trial was conducted from May 11, 2017, through September 24, 2020, in 90 centers across 14 countries. Patients with advanced CKD were eligible if they planned to start dialysis within 6 weeks from screening or had started and received hemodialysis (HD) or peritoneal dialysis (PD) within 90 days before randomization, had a screening hemoglobin (Hb) concentration of 8.0 to 10.5 g/dL (to convert to grams per liter, multiply by 10) and a randomization Hb of 8.0 to 11.0 g/dL, were ESA-naive or had received limited ESA treatment, and were iron-replete. INTERVENTIONS Randomized 1:1 to daprodustat or darbepoetin alfa. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The primary analysis in the intent-to-treat population evaluated the mean change in Hb concentration from baseline to evaluation period (weeks 28-52) to assess noninferiority of daprodustat vs darbepoetin alfa (noninferiority margin, -0.75 g/dL). The mean monthly intravenous (IV) iron dose from baseline to week 52 was the principal secondary end point. Rates of treatment-emergent and serious adverse events (AEs) were also compared between treatment groups to assess safety and tolerability. RESULTS A total of 312 patients (median [IQR] age, 55 [45-65] years; 194 [62%] male) were randomized to either daprodustat (157 patients; median [IQR] age, 52.0 [45-63] years; 96 [61%] male) or darbepoetin alfa (155 patients; median [IQR] age, 56.0 [45-67] years; 98 [63%] male); 306 patients (98%) completed the trial. The mean (SD) Hb concentration during the evaluation period was 10.5 (1.0) g/dL for the daprodustat and 10.6 (0.9) g/dL for the darbepoetin alfa group, with an adjusted mean treatment difference of -0.10 g/dL (95% CI, -0.34 to 0.14 g/dL), indicating noninferiority. There was a reduction in mean monthly IV iron use from baseline to week 52 in both treatment groups; however, daprodustat was not superior compared with darbepoetin alfa in reducing monthly IV iron use (adjusted mean treatment difference, 19.4 mg [95% CI, -11.0 to 49.9 mg]). Adverse event rates were 76% for daprodustat vs 72% for darbepoetin alfa. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE This randomized clinical trial found that daprodustat was noninferior to darbepoetin alfa in treating anemia of CKD and may represent a potential oral alternative to a conventional ESA in the ID population. TRIAL REGISTRATION ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03029208.
Three Times Weekly Dosing of Daprodustat versus Conventional Epoetin for Treatment of Anemia in Hemodialysis Patients: ASCEND-TD: A Phase 3 Randomized, Double-Blind, Noninferiority Trial
Clinical journal of the American Society of Nephrology : CJASN. 2022
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES Daprodustat is a hypoxia-inducible factor prolyl hydroxylase inhibitor (HIF-PHI) being investigated for the treatment of anemia of CKD. In this noninferiority trial, we compared daprodustat administered three times weekly with epoetin alfa (epoetin) in patients on prevalent hemodialysis switching from a prior erythropoiesis-stimulating agent (ESA). DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS, & MEASUREMENTS Patients on hemodialysis with a baseline hemoglobin of 8-11.5 g/dl receiving an ESA were randomized 2:1 to daprodustat three times weekly (n=270) or conventional epoetin (n=137) for 52 weeks. Dosing algorithms aimed to maintain hemoglobin between 10 and 11 g/dl. The primary end point was mean change in hemoglobin from baseline to the average during the evaluation period (weeks 28-52). The principal secondary end point was average monthly intravenous iron dose. Other secondary end points included BP and hemoglobin variability. RESULTS Daprodustat three times weekly was noninferior to epoetin for mean change in hemoglobin (model-adjusted mean treatment difference [daprodustat-epoetin], -0.05; 95% confidence interval, -0.21 to 0.10). During the evaluation period, mean (SD) hemoglobin values were 10.45 (0.55) and 10.51 (0.85) g/dl for daprodustat and epoetin groups, respectively. Responders (defined as mean hemoglobin during the evaluation period in the analysis range of 10 to 11.5 g/dl) were 80% in the daprodustat group versus 64% in the epoetin group. Proportionately fewer participants in the daprodustat group versus the epoetin group had hemoglobin values either below 10 g/dl or above 11.5 g/dl during the evaluation period. Mean monthly intravenous iron use was not significantly lower with daprodustat versus epoetin. The effect on BP was similar between groups. The percentage of treatment-emergent adverse events was similar between daprodustat (75%) and epoetin (79%). CONCLUSIONS Daprodustat was noninferior to epoetin in hemoglobin response and was generally well tolerated. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRY NAME AND REGISTRATION NUMBER Anemia Studies in Chronic Kidney Disease: Erythropoiesis via a Novel Prolyl Hydroxylase Inhibitor Daprodustat-Three Times Weekly Dosing in Dialysis (ASCEND-TD), NCT03400033.
Efficacy and safety of darbepoetin alfa injection replacing epoetin alfa injection for the treatment of renal anemia in Chinese hemodialysis patients: A randomized, open-label, parallel-group, noninferiority phase III trial
Chronic diseases and translational medicine. 2022;8(2):134-144
BACKGROUND This study was to explore the clinical efficacy and safety of darbepoetin alfa injection replacing epoetin alfa injection (recombinant human erythropoietin injection, rHuEPO) for the treatment of anemia associated with chronic kidney failure in Chinese patients undergoing hemodialysis. METHOD This study was a multicenter, randomized, open-label, intergroup parallel control phase III noninferiority trial from April 19, 2013 to September 9, 2014 at 25 sites. In this study, the members of the darbepoetin alfa group underwent intravenous administration once per week or once every two weeks. The members of the control drug epoetin alfa group underwent intravenous administration two or three times per week. All subjects underwent epoetin alfa administration during the 8-week baseline period. After that, subjects were randomly assigned to the darbepoetin alfa group or epoetin alfa group. The noninferiority in the changes of the average Hb concentrations from the baseline to the end of the evaluation period (noninferiority threshold: -1.0 g/dl) was tested between the two treatments. The time-dependent hemoglobin (Hb) concentration and the maintenance rate of the target Hb concentration (the proportion of subjects with Hb concentrations between 10.0 and 12.0 g/dl) were also evaluated. Iron metabolism, including changes in the serum iron, total iron-binding capacity, ferritin, transferrin saturation, and comparisons of the dose adjustments between the two groups during the treatment period were analyzed further. Adverse events (AEs) were also observed and compared, and the safety was analyzed between the two treatment groups. The conversion rate switching from epoetin alfa to darbepoetin alfa was also discussed. SAS® software version 9.2 was used to perform all statistical analyses. Descriptive statistics were used for all efficacy, safety, and demographic variable analyses, including for the primary efficacy indicators. RESULTS Four hundred and sixty-six patients were enrolled in this study, and ultimately 384 cases were analyzed for safety, including 267 cases in the darbepoetin alfa group and 117 cases in the epoetin alfa group. There were 211 cases in the per-protocol set, including 152 cases in the darbepoetin alfa group and 59 cases in the epoetin alfa group. The changes in the average Hb concentrations from the baseline to the end of the evaluation period were -0.07 and -0.15 g/dl in the darbepoetin alfa group and epoetin alfa group respectively. The difference between the two groups was 0.08 g/dl (95% confidence interval [CI]: -0.22 to 0.39), and the lower limit of the 95% CI was -0.22 > -1.0 g/dl. The average Hb concentrations of the two groups were 10.88-11.43 g/dl (darbepoetin alfa) and 10.91-11.38 g/dl (epoetin alfa) during the study period of Weeks 0-28, with the maintenance rates of the target Hb concentration ranging within 71%-87% and 78%-95% in the darbepoetin alfa group and epoetin alfa group respectively. During the period of comparison between the two groups, the incidence of AEs in the darbepoetin alfa group was 61.42%, while in the epoetin alfa group it was 56.41%. All of the adverse events and reactions in the study were those commonly associated with hemodialysis. CONCLUSION The overall efficacy and safety of darbepoetin alfa for the treatment of Chinese renal anemia patients undergoing hemodialysis are consistent with those of epoetin alfa.
Furosemide and albumin for the treatment of nephrotic edema: a systematic review
Pediatric nephrology (Berlin, Germany). 2022
BACKGROUND Edema is one of the cardinal clinical features of nephrotic syndrome (NS). It may vary from mild periorbital edema to severe generalized edema (anasarca). In patients where edema does not improve with prednisone therapy, the most common supportive medications are diuretics and albumin. However, due to the complex pathophysiology of edema formation in NS patients resulting in intravascular normovolemia or hypovolemia, optimal therapy for edema is still debated. We conducted a systematic review with the objective of evaluating the change in urine volume and urine sodium excretion after treatment with furosemide only versus furosemide with albumin in edematous patients with NS. OBJECTIVES (1) To evaluate efficacy of furosemide alone versus furosemide with albumin in the treatment of nephrotic edema in adults and children. (2) To compare the harms and benefits of different doses of furosemide for treating nephrotic edema. SEARCH METHODS The search included all randomized or quasi-randomized controlled trials in English and French using MEDLINE, Embase, and CENTRAL Trials Registry of the Cochrane Collaboration using the Ovid interface. ClinicalTrials.gov and the International Clinical Trials Registry Platform were also searched. SELECTION CRITERIA We included all RCTs and randomized cross-over studies in which furosemide and furosemide plus albumin are used in the treatment of children or adults with nephrotic edema. We excluded patients with hypoalbuminemia of non-renal origin and severe chronic kidney disease (CKD) with a glomerular filtration rate below 30 ml/min/1.74 m(2) and patients with congenital NS. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS All abstracts were independently assessed by at least two authors to determine which studies met the inclusion criteria. Information on study design, methodology, and outcome data (urine volume, urine sodium excretion, adverse effects) from each identified study was entered into a separate data sheet. The differences in outcomes between the types of therapy were expressed as standardized mean difference (SMD) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). RESULTS The search yielded 525 records, and after screening, five studies were included in the systematic review and four of those studies in the meta-analysis. One study had high risk of bias and the remaining three studies were deemed to have some concerns. Urine excretion was greater after treatment with furosemide and albumin versus furosemide (SMD 0.85, 95% CI = 0.33 to 1.38). Results for sodium excretion were inconclusive (SMD 0.37, 95%CI = - 0.28 to 1.02). AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS The current evidence is not sufficient to make definitive conclusions about the role of albumin in treating nephrotic edema. High-quality randomized studies with adequate samples sizes are needed. Including an assessment of intravascular volume status may be helpful. TRIAL REGISTRATION Prospero: CRD4201808979. https://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO A higher resolution version of the Graphical abstract is available as Supplementary information.
Use of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents in children with chronic kidney disease: a systematic review
Clinical kidney journal. 2022;15(8):1483-1505
BACKGROUND Erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) revolutionized the management of anaemia in chronic kidney disease (CKD) when introduced in the late 1980s. A range of ESA types, preparations and administration modalities now exist, with newer agents requiring less frequent administration. Although systematic reviews and meta-analyses have been published in adults, no systematic review has been conducted investigating ESAs in children. METHODS The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses statement for the conduct of systematic reviews was used. All available literature on outcomes relating to ESAs in children with CKD was sought. A search of the MEDLINE, CINAHL and Embase databases was conducted by two independent reviewers. Inclusion criteria were published trials in English, children with chronic and end-stage kidney disease and use of any ESA studied against any outcome measure. An assessment of risk of bias was carried out in all included randomized trials using the criteria from the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. Two tables were used for data extraction for randomized and observational studies. Study type, participants, inclusion criteria, case characteristics, follow-up duration, ESA type and dosage, interventions and outcomes were extracted by one author. RESULTS Of 965 identified articles, 58 were included covering 54 cohorts. Six were randomized trials and 48 were observational studies. A total of 38 studies assessed the efficacy of recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO), 11 of darbepoetin alpha (DA) and 3 of continuous erythropoietin receptor activator (CERA), with 6 studies appraising secondary outcome measures exclusively. Recruitment to studies was a consistent challenge. The most common adverse effect was hypertension, although confounding effects often limited direct correlation. Two large cohort studies demonstrated a greater hazard of death independently associated with high ESA dose. Secondary outcome measures included quality of life measures, growth and nutrition, exercise capacity, injection site pain, cardiovascular function, intelligent quotient, evoked potentials and platelet function. CONCLUSIONS All ESA preparations and modes of administration were efficacious, with evidence of harm at higher doses. Evidence supports individualizing treatments, with strong consideration given to alternate treatments in patients who appear resistant to ESA therapy. Further research should focus on randomized trials comparing the efficacy of different preparations, treatment options in apparently ESA-resistant cohorts and clarification of meaningful secondary outcomes to consolidate patient-relevant indices.
Children with chronic kidney disease using any erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs), (58 studies, n= 3,895).
Systematic review assessing the efficacy of ESAs.
A total of 38 studies assessed the efficacy of recombinant human erythropoietin, 11 of darbepoetin alpha, and 3 of continuous erythropoietin receptor activator, with 6 studies appraising secondary outcome measures exclusively. The most common adverse effect was hypertension, although confounding effects often limited direct correlation. Two large cohort studies demonstrated a greater hazard of death independently associated with high ESA dose. Secondary outcome measures included quality of life measures, growth and nutrition, exercise capacity, injection site pain, cardiovascular function, intelligent quotient, evoked potentials and platelet function.