Use of phosphate-binding agents is associated with a lower risk of mortality

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Hyperphosphatemia has been associated with higher mortality risk in CKD 5 patients receiving dialysis. Here, we determined the association between the use of single and combined phosphate-binding agents and survival in 6797 patients of the COSMOS study: a 3-year follow-up, multicenter, open-cohort, observational prospective study carried out in 227 dialysis centers from 20 European countries. Patient phosphate-binding agent prescriptions (time-varying) and the case-mix-adjusted facility percentage of phosphate-binding agent prescriptions (instrumental variable) were used as predictors of the relative all-cause and cardiovascular mortality using Cox proportional hazard regression models. Three different multivariate models that included up to 24 variables were used for adjustments. After multivariate analysis, patients prescribed phosphate-binding agents showed a 29 and 22\% lower all-cause and cardiovascular mortality risk, respectively. The survival advantage of phosphate-binding agent prescription remained statistically significant after propensity score matching analysis. A decrease of 8\% in the relative risk of mortality was found for every 10\% increase in the case-mix-adjusted facility prescription of phosphate-binding agents. All single and combined therapies with phosphate-binding agents, except aluminum salts, showed a beneficial association with survival. The findings made in the present association study need to be confirmed by randomized controlled trials to prove the observed beneficial effect of phosphate-binding agents on mortality.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)998-1008
Number of pages11
JournalKidney International
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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