ORLANDO, Fla.—Long-term hemodialysis (HD) patients who receive paricalcitol as treatment for secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT) may require less erythropoietin than those who receive no SHPT treatment, according to new data presented at the National Kidney Foundation’s 2010 Spring Clinical Meetings.

Samina Khan, MD, Renal Medical Director for Abbott in Chicago, and colleagues assessed erythropoietin use among HD patients receiving paricalcitol versus no treatment for SHPT during their first year on HD. Their study included adult patients who survived the first 90 days of HD, had no history of a kidney transplant, and had baseline intact parathyroid hormone levels (iPTH) greater than 149 pg/mL.

A total of 5,394 patients were matched and propensity scoring for age, gender, race, diabetes status, and baseline hemoglobin (Hb) levels were used in this analysis. The investigators used a generalized linear regression model to compare the mean erythropoietin use per patient year after adjusting for age, gender, race, diabetes status, study entry period, and baseline Hb and iPTH levels.

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Erythropoietin use during the first year was greater among HD patients who did not receive any treatment for SHPT (1,022,578 units per patient year) compared with paricalcitol-treated patients (891,872 units per patient year). Although additional studies are needed to confirm these results, they concluded that their findings may be clinically relevant in terms of overall medication use among HD patients.