Electrocardiographic abnormalities among dialysis naïve chronic kidney disease patients in Ilorin Nigeria

  • A Chijioke
  • AM Makusidi
  • PM Kolo
Keywords: Chronic kidney disease, Electrocardiogram abnormalities, Ilorin, Nigeria


Background: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) has an increased risk of not only end-stage renal disease (ESRD), but majority of moderate CKD patients do die from cardiovascular disease (CVD) before reaching ESRD. The prognosis of these patients is very poor in most developing countries because of late presentation, inadequate diagnostic facilities, and inability to pay for treatment. Knowledge about CVD in CKD is crucial because of unpredictable progressive nature of the disease and increased risk of  premature death from cardiovascular events. We sought to determine prevalence and pattern of electrocardiographic abnormalities in dialysis naïve CKD patients.
Materials and Methods: This is a 10-year prospective cross-sectional study carried out at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin. Patients  were recruited from the nephrology clinic and renal wards and all who met
diagnostic criteria for stages 4 and 5 CKD were included. All had their  standard 12–lead electrocardiogram (ECG) recorded and various findings were critically studied and interpreted independently by two consultant  physician including a cardiologist. Data analysis was done using SPSS  version 16.
Results: Overall, 86% of the patients had at least one form of ECG  abnormality, with hypertension (HTN) and anemia being the main contributory factors. These include left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH)  (27.6%), left atrial enlargement (LAE) (21.6%), combination of LVH and LAE (17.2%), and ventricular premature contractions (6%). Etiology of CKD
appears to have influence on ECG changes as prevalence of LVH and LAE were high among hypertensive renal disease, chronic glomerulonephritis (CGN), and diabetic nephropathy patients.
Conclusion: LVH and LAE were very common ECG abnormalities in our  dialysis naïve CKD patients. HTN, CGN, anemia, late presentation, and male gender appear to be the main risk factors for the ECG abnormalities. There is need for gender-specific intervention strategies directed at early detection and treatment of HTN, anemia, and underlying kidney disease, especially in resource poor nations where the burden of CKD is assuming epidemic proportion.

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eISSN: 1596-3519