Open Access Research article

Risk factors of short-term mortality after acute nonvariceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding in patients on dialysis: a population-based study

Ju-Yeh Yang12, Tsung-Chun Lee3, Maria E Montez-Rath1, Glenn M Chertow1 and Wolfgang C Winkelmayer1*

Author Affiliations

1 Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, 1070 Arastradero Rd., Suite 313, Palo Alto, CA, 94304, USA

2 Division of Nephrology and Department of Internal Medicine, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, No.21, Sec. 2, Nanya S. Rd., Banciao Dist., New Taipei City, 220, Taiwan

3 Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University Hospital and National Taiwan University College of Medicine, No.7, Chung Shan S. Rd. (Zhongshan S. Rd.), Zhongzheng Dist., Taipei City, 10002, Taiwan

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BMC Nephrology 2013, 14:97  doi:10.1186/1471-2369-14-97

Published: 26 April 2013



Impaired kidney function is an established predictor of mortality after acute nonvariceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding (ANVUGIB); however, which factors are associated with mortality after ANVUGIB among patients undergoing dialysis is unknown. We examined the associations among demographic characteristics, dialysis-specific features, and comorbid conditions with short-term mortality after ANVUGIB among patients on dialysis.


Design: Retrospective cohort study. Setting: United States Renal Data System (USRDS), a nation-wide registry of patients with end-stage renal disease. Participants: All ANVUGIB episodes identified by validated algorithms in Medicare-covered patients between 2003 and 2007. Measurements: Demographic characteristics and comorbid conditions from 1 year of billing claims prior to each bleeding event. We used logistic regression extended with generalized estimating equations methods to model the associations among risk factors and 30-day mortality following ANVUGIB events.


From 2003 to 2007, we identified 40,016 eligible patients with 50,497 episodes of ANVUGIB. Overall 30-day mortality was 10.7% (95% CI: 10.4-11.0). Older age, white race, longer dialysis vintage, peritoneal dialysis (vs. hemodialysis), and hospitalized (vs. outpatient) episodes were independently associated with a higher risk of 30-day mortality. Most but not all comorbid conditions were associated with death after ANVUGIB. The joint ability of all factors captured to discriminate mortality was modest (c=0.68).


We identified a profile of risk factors for 30-day mortality after ANVUGIB among patients on dialysis that was distinct from what had been reported in non-dialysis populations. Specifically, peritoneal dialysis and more years since initiation of dialysis were independently associated with short-term death after ANVUGIB.

Gastrointestinal hemorrhage; Risk factors; Mortality; Dialysis