The two groups of patients were similar with respect to all baseline characteristics the investigators examined, from age and gender to comorbidities and laboratory values.
Twenty-one percent of the PD patients had been hospitalized once in the previous year (not counting the hospitalization during which dialysis was initiated) compared with 16 percent of the matched HD patients. PD patients were also more likely than HD patients to have two or more and three or more hospitalizations (8% vs. 5% and 8% vs. 3%, respectively).
PD was associated with a nearly 2.9-fold higher risk compared to HD of hospitalization due to dialysis-related infections, a twofold increased risk of other hospitalizations due to other infections, including a 1.6-fold higher risk of hospitalization due to abdominal infections. However, PD also was associated with 70 percent and 40 percent lower probabilities of being hospitalized for septicemia or pneumonia, respectively.
In a previous retrospective cohort study of 168 patients initiating outpatient dialysis (71 on PD and 97 on HD), researchers at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto found that patients who initiate outpatient PD do not have a significantly increased risk of infection-related hospitalization compared with patients who initiate outpatient HD, according to a report published in Peritoneal Dialysis International (2011;31:440-449). The study, however, showed that patients starting outpatient treatment on PD were significantly more likely than those starting on HD to be hospitalized for peritonitis.