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Extracorporeal versus peritoneal ultrafiltration in diuretic-resistant congestive heart failure – a review

Zofia Wańkowicz, Agnieszka Próchnicka, Anna Olszowska, Daniel Baczyński, Paweł Krzesiński, Mirosław Dziuk

Med Sci Monit 2011; 17(12): RA271-281

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.882118

Diuretic-resistant congestive heart failure in the form of type 2 cardiorenal syndrome is a problem of growing significance in everyday clinical practice because of high morbidity and mortality. There has been scant progress in the treatment of overhydration, the main cause of symptoms in this group of patients. The aim of our review is to present recent advances in the ultrafiltration therapy of congestive heart failure, with special attention to the new dedicated device for extracorporeal isolated ultrafiltration, as well as modifications of peritoneal dialysis in the form of peritoneal ultrafiltration with icodextrin solution and incremental peritoneal dialysis. Technical and clinical features, costs and potential risks of available devices for isolated ultrafiltration are presented. This method should be reserved for patients with true diuretic resistance as part of a more complex strategy aiming at the adequate control of fluid retention. Peritoneal ultrafiltration is presented as a viable alternative to extracorporeal ultrafiltration because of medical and psychosocial benefits of home-based therapy, lower costs and more effective daily ultrafiltration. In conclusion, large, properly randomized and controlled clinical trials with long-term follow-up will be essential in assessing the logistics and cost-effectiveness of both methods. Most importantly, however, they should be able to evaluate the impact of both methods on preservation of renal function and delaying the progression of heart failure by interrupting the vicious circle of cardiorenal syndrome. Our review is supplemented with the case report of the use of peritoneal ultrafiltration with a single 12-hour nighttime icodextrin exchange as a life-saving procedure in a patient with congestive heart failure resistant to pharmacological treatment.

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