Treatment of hyperphosphatemia in patients with chronic kidney disease on maintenance hemodialysis

Charles R. Nolan, Wajeh Y. Qunibi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Hyperphosphatemia in patients with ESRD leads to secondary hyperparathyroidism, renal osteodystrophy, and is independently associated with mortality risk. The exact mechanism by which hyperphosphatemia increases mortality risk is unknown, but it may relate to enhanced cardiovascular calcification. National Kidney Foundation K/DOQI bone metabolism and disease guidelines recommend maintenance of serum phosphorus (P) below 5.5 mg/dL, and Ca x P product less than 55 mg2/dL2. Although calcium-based phosphate binders (CBPB) are cost effective, long-term safety concerns relate to their postulated role in progression of cardiovascular calcification. Sevelamer hydrochloride has been recommended as an alternative noncalcium phosphate binder. Results from the Calcium Acetate Renagel Evaluation (CARE study) indicate that calcium acetate is more effective than sevelamer in controlling serum phosphorous and Ca x P product in hemodialysis patients. In the Treat-to-Goal study, dialysis patients treated with sevelamer had slower progression of coronary and aortic calcification than patients treated with CBPB. The mechanism underlying the beneficial effect of sevelamer is unknown, but may relate to decreased calcium loading or to dramatic reductions in LDL cholesterol in sevelamer-treated patients. At present, evidence incriminating CBPB in the progression of cardiovascular calcification in ESRD remains largely circumstantial. As calcium acetate is more efficacious and cost effective than sevelamer, it remains an accepted first-line phosphate binder. In this review, we will examine these issues and provide rational guidelines for the use of calcium-based phosphate binders in patients on maintenance hemodialysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S13-S20
JournalKidney International, Supplement
Issue number95
StatePublished - Jun 2005


  • Calcium acetate
  • Cardiovascular calcification
  • Hypercalcemia
  • Metabolic acidosis
  • Phosphate binders
  • Sevelamer hydrochloride

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


Dive into the research topics of 'Treatment of hyperphosphatemia in patients with chronic kidney disease on maintenance hemodialysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this