A study of new hemodialysis patients revealed that those treated with the phosphate binder sevelamer had a significantly lower death rate than those treated with calcium-containing phosphate binders.

Geoffrey Block, MD, of Denver Nephrology, and his colleagues evaluated all-cause mortality in 127 patients new to hemodialysis who were randomly assigned to receive either sevelamer or calcium-containing phosphate binders.

The investigators followed patients for 44 months. Patients who received calcium-containing binders had a threefold higher death risk than those who received sevelamer, Dr. Block’s group reported in Kidney International (2007;71:438-441). The investigators also found that baseline coronary artery calcium scores were a significant predictor of all-cause mortality after adjusting for age, gender, race, and diabetes.

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