Ultrafiltration May Be Superior to Diuretic for Heart Failure

Studies suggest it removes more fluid, decreases more body weight

MONDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- The Aquadex ultrafiltration system developed by CHF Solutions, Inc., may be more effective than diuretics at removing excess fluid from patients with congestive heart failure, according to research presented this week at the American College of Cardiology conference in Atlanta.

Syed Saghir, M.D., of The Christ Hospital in Cincinnati, and colleagues presented a study in which 21 patients underwent ultrafiltration and 21 patients received nesiritide. They found that the ultrafiltration group experienced more robust fluid removal (an average of 7.5 liters) compared to the nesiritide group (an average of 1.9 liters). But they also found ultrafiltration was associated with increased BUN (from 54.8 to 64.3) and creatinine (33 percent).

Maria Rosa Costanzo, M.D., of Midwest Heart Foundation in Lombard, Ill., presented research from a company-supported study of 200 patients who were randomized to receive either ultrafiltration or diuretic. After two days, the ultrafiltration group lost an average of 11 pounds while the diuretic group lost an average of 6.8 pounds.

"In a clinical setting without a protocol driven algorithm for nesiritide use, ultrafiltration appears to be more effective in decreasing volume, albeit with a greater increase in creatinine and BUN," Saghir and colleagues concluded.

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