Lipoprotein(a) levels in patients receiving renal replacement therapy: methodologic issues and clinical implications Article Conference Paper uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Cholesterol
  • Critical Illness
  • Cytokines
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome


  • Lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] is a genetically determined risk factor for vascular disease and a potential link between coagulation, lipoproteins, and the development of atherosclerosis. Its role in the vascular complications of patients with chronic renal disease is unclear. We review methodologic issues involved in measuring Lp(a), particularly as they relate to studies of patients with chronic renal disease. The accurate measurement of Lp(a) is difficult because all the commercially available assays are sensitive to apolipoprotein(a) isoform size, Lp(a) behaves like an acute phase reactant, and levels vary markedly among ethnic groups. The results of 12 studies that included data on median Lp(a) levels in controls and patients receiving renal replacement therapy were analyzed. Although there was variation among studies, most found elevated levels of Lp(a) in patients receiving hemodialysis (range of medians, 9.0 to 38.4 mg/dL) compared with controls (range of medians, 4.7 to 19.7 mg/dL). With the exception of one study, Lp(a) levels also were elevated in patients receiving continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis compared with controls and patients receiving hemodialysis. In one study, an elevated Lp(a) level in patients receiving hemodialysis correlated with subsequent development of vascular events. A separate study associated the occurrence of vascular access occlusion with Lp(a) level. Following renal transplantation, Lp(a) levels decreased in all four studies, which included data before and after transplantation. Although variability in results were seen, Lp(a) levels appear to be elevated in patients receiving renal replacement therapy. Renal transplantation at least partially reverses this effect. The variability in results is probably related to methodologic difficulties in measuring Lp(a) and failure to segregate ethnic groups in study design and analysis.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

publication date

  • January 1995



  • Conference Paper


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/0272-6386(95)90170-1

PubMed ID

  • 7611248

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 162

end page

  • 9


  • 26


  • 1