Open Access Open Badges Research article

Regression of left ventricular mass following conversion from conventional hemodialysis to thrice weekly in-centre nocturnal hemodialysis

Ron Wald12*, Andrew T Yan23, Jeffrey Perl12, Depeng Jiang45, M Sandra Donnelly12, Howard Leong-Poi23, Philip A McFarlane12, Jordan J Weinstein12 and Marc B Goldstein12

  • * Corresponding author: Ron Wald

  • † Equal contributors

Author Affiliations

1 Division of Nephrology, St. Michael's Hospital and the Univerity of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

2 Keenan Research Centre in the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

3 Division of Cardiology, St. Michael's Hospital and the Univerity of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

4 Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

5 Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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BMC Nephrology 2012, 13:3  doi:10.1186/1471-2369-13-3

Published: 19 January 2012



Increased left ventricular mass (LVM) is associated with adverse outcomes in patients receiving chronic hemodialysis. Among patients receiving conventional hemodialysis (CHD, 3×/week, 4 hrs/session), we evaluated whether dialysis intensification with in-centre nocturnal hemodialysis (INHD, 3×/week, 7-8 hrs/session in the dialysis unit) was associated with regression of LVM.


We conducted a retrospective cohort study of CHD recipients who converted to INHD and received INHD for at least 6 months. LVM on the first echocardiogram performed at least 6 months post-conversion was compared to LVM pre-conversion. In a secondary analysis, we examined echocardiograms performed at least 12 months after starting INHD. The effect of conversion to INHD on LVM over time was also evaluated using a longitudinal analysis that incorporated all LVM data on patients with 2 or more echocardiograms.


Thirty-seven patients were eligible for the primary analysis. Mean age at conversion was 49 ± 12 yrs and 30% were women. Mean pre-conversion LVM was 219 ± 66 g and following conversion, LVM declined by 32 ± 58 g (p = 0.002). Among patients whose follow-up echocardiogram occurred at least 12 months following conversion, LVM declined by 40 ± 56 g (p = 0.0004). The rate of change of LVM decreased significantly from 0.4 g/yr before conversion, to -11.7 g/yr following conversion to INHD (p < 0.0001).


Conversion to INHD is associated with a significant regression in LVM, which may portend a more favourable cardiovascular outcome. Our preliminary findings support the need for randomized controlled trials to definitively evaluate the cardiovascular effects of INHD.

end-stage renal disease; in-centre nocturnal hemodialysis; left ventricular mass