Introduction In hemodialysis patients on ferric citrate hydrate, the increase in ferritin level is mainly due to the administration of the compound. We investigated possible other factors associated with ferritin level and how erythropoietin resistance index and erythropoiesis in those patients were affected. We looked at ferritin-elevating factors using data from a Japanese phase III long-term clinical trial of ferric citrate hydrate. Methods The factors with a strong association with ferritin levels at week 28 were selected by the process of variable selection. In addition, selected factors were analyzed by Mixed Model for Repeated Measurement. Subjects were divided into 3 groups by quantiles (<Q1, Q1–Q3, Q3<) of the most strongly correlated factors. Then the least-squares means of change of ferritin at each time point for each group were calculated. Finally, the differences of the least-squares means were examined. Changes of both erythropoiesis-stimulating agent dose and erythropoietin resistance index for each group were investigated. The differences in mean erythropoietin resistance index between groups at baseline, week 28, and week 52 were analyzed using t tests. Results Dose of ferric citrate hydrate showed the strongest correlation with change of ferritin and the second strongest was the reduction of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents. The mean erythropoietin resistance index was lowered in group <Q1. Group <Q1 showed significantly lower levels of ferritin at baseline. Discussion It is suggested that not only iron load but also the erythropoiesis-stimulating agent dose reduction may be involved in ferritin elevation during ferric citrate hydrate treatment, resulting in a decrease of erythropoietin resistance index.
- ferric citrate hydrate
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