Evidence of increased vascular stiffness and left ventricular hypertrophy in children with cystic kidney disease.

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DOI: 10.1007/s00467-023-06081-y


BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the most common cause of mortality in chronic kidney disease (CKD). Children with early-onset CKD arguably experience the greatest lifetime CVD burden. We utilized data from the Chronic Kidney Disease in Children Cohort Study (CKiD) to evaluate two pediatric CKD cohorts: congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract (CAKUT) and cystic kidney disease for CVD risks and outcomes.

METHODS: CVD risk factors and outcomes including blood pressures, left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH), left ventricular mass index (LVMI), and ambulatory arterial stiffness index (AASI) scores were evaluated.

RESULTS: Forty-one patients in the cystic kidney disease group were compared to 294 patients in the CAKUT group. Cystic kidney disease patients had higher cystatin-C levels, despite similar iGFR. Systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) indexes were higher in the CAKUT group, but a significantly higher proportion of cystic kidney disease patients was on anti-hypertensive medications. Cystic kidney disease patients had increased AASI scores and a higher incidence of LVH.

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides a nuanced analysis of CVD risk factors and outcomes including AASI and LVH in two pediatric CKD cohorts. Cystic kidney disease patients had increased AASI scores, higher incidence of LVH, and higher rates of anti-hypertensive medication use which could imply a greater burden of CVD despite similar GFR. Our work suggests that additional mechanisms may contribute to vascular dysfunction in cystic kidney disease, and that these patients may need additional interventions to prevent the development of CVD. A higher resolution version of the Graphical abstract is available as Supplementary information.

Journal Title

Pediatric nephrology (Berlin, Germany)





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Cardiovascular disease; Chronic kidney disease; Cystic kidney disease

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