Yeungnam Univ J Med.  1997 Dec;14(2):399-414.

Long-term Effect of Desferrioxamine to rHuEPO Regident Anemia in Hemodialysis Patients

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine College of Medicine, Yeungnam University, Taegu, Korea.


There are several factors concerning to anemia in chronic renal failure patients. But when rHuEPO is used, most of these factors can be overcome, and the levels of hemoglobin are increased, However, about 10% of the renal failure patients represent rHuEPO-resistant anemia eventhough high dosage of rHuEPO. For these cases, desferrioxamine can be applied to correct rHuEPO resistnacy, and many mechanism og DFO are arguing. So we are going to know whether DFO can applied to correct anemia of the such patients, how long its effect can continued. The seven patients as experimental group(DFO+EPO) who represent refractoriness to rHuEPO and the other seven patients as control group(EPO) were included. Experimental group has lower than 9 g/dL of hemoglobin levels despite high rHuEPO dosage (more than 4000U/Wk) and showed normochromic anemia. There were no definitive causes of anemia such as hemorrhage or iron deficiency. Control group patients has similar characteristics in age, mean dialysis duration but showed adequate response to rHuEPO. DFO was administered to experimental group for 8 weeks along with rHuEPO(the rHuEPO individual mean dosage had been determined by mean dosage of the previous 6 months. Total mean dosage; 123.5 U/Kg/Wk). After 8 weeks of DFO administration, the hemoglobin and rHuEPO dosage levels were checked for 15 consecutive months. It should be noted that the patients determined their own rHuEPO dosage levels according to hemoglobin levels and economic status. In control group, rHuEPO was administered by the same method used in experimental group without DFO through the same period. Fifteen months of ovservation period after DFO trial were divided as Time I(7 months after DFO trial) and Times II(8 months after Time I). The results are as follows: Before DFO trial, mean hemoglobin level of experimental group was 7.8 g/dL, which is similar level(p>0.05) to control group(mean Hb; 8.2 g/dL). But in experimental group, significantly(p<0.05) higher dosages of rHuEPO(mean; 123.5 U/Kg/Wk) than control group (mean;41.6 U/Kg/Wk) had been used. It means resistancy to rHuEPO of experimental group. But after DFO trial, the hemoglobin levels of the experimental group were increased significantly(p<0.05), and these effect were continued to II.(Time I; mean 8.6g/dL, Time II; mean 8.6g/dL) The effects of DFO to hemoglobin were continued for 15 months after DFO trial with simiral degree through Time I, Time II. Also, rHuEPO dosage used in the experimental group were decreased to simiral levels of the control group after DFO trial and these effect were also continued for 15 months(Time I; mean 48.1 U/Kg/Wk. Time II; mean 51.8 U/Kg/Wk). In the same period, hemoglobin levels and rHuEPO dosages used in the control group were not changed significantly. Notibly, hemoglobin increment and rHuEPO usage decrement in experimental group were showed maxilly in the 1st month after DFO trial. That is, after the use of DFO, erythropoiesis was enhanced with a reduced rHuEPO dosage. So we think rHuEPO reisistancy can be overcome by DFO therapy. In conclusion, the DFO can improve the anemia caused by chronic renal failure at least over 1 year, and hence, can reduce the dosage of rHuEPO for anemia correction. Additional studies in order to determined the mechanism of DFO on erythropoiesis and careful attention to potential side effects DFO will be needed.


Chronic renal failure; rHuEPO-resistant anemia; Long-term effect of desferrioxamine

MeSH Terms

Kidney Failure, Chronic
Renal Dialysis*
Renal Insufficiency
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