Transitional care program to facilitate recovery following severe acute kidney injury.


Division of Nephrology, University Medicine Cluster, National University Hospital, Singapore, Singapore. [Email]


BACKGROUND : Patients with acute kidney injury needing prolonged renal replacement therapy (AKI-RRT) may benefit from a structured care process in form of an AKI transitional care program (ATCP), to facilitate RRT weaning and recovery.
METHODS : We examined outcomes following ATCP implementation in adults with AKI-RRT from a tertiary institution (versus pre-ATCP controls), including mortality, cumulative hospital days, and renal function over one year; RRT and haemodialysis catheter days in initial 90 days.
RESULTS : We studied 89 patients with age 62 ( ± 15) years. 47% had septic AKI, 20% cardiorenal syndrome, and 29% had baseline eGFR < 30 mL/min/1.73 m2. Comparing 45 ATCP patients with 44 controls: 64% and 45% received continuous RRT (CRRT) (p = 0.07), with comparable rates of heart failure (24% versus 25%), ICU care (67% versus 70%), RRT successfully weaned (71% versus 75%), respectively; corresponding mortality rates were 24% and 32% (p = 0.44), hospital days of 205 (197-213) and 223 (215-232) per 1000 patient-days alive over one year (p = 0.002); with comparable RRT and catheter days. Serial serum creatinine in months following RRT cessation were comparable between either survivor-group. On multivariate analysis, heart failure or having received CRRT independently predicted mortality and longer hospital days (p < 0.05); ATCP was independently associated with reduced hospital days (p < 0.001). 17 ATCP patients and 14 controls required outpatient RRT weaning, with catheter days of 607 (568-648) and 683 (638-731) per 1000 patient-days in initial 90 days, respectively (p = 0.01).
CONCLUSIONS : Implementing a structured care pathway in patients with AKI-RRT may help reduce hospitalization, and reduce haemodialysis catheter days in the subgroup for outpatient RRT weaning.


Acute kidney injury,Cardio-renal syndrome,Hospitalization,Multidisciplinary care,Quality improvement,Renal replacement therapy,Transitional care,Weaning,