The comprehensive dialysis study (CDS): A USRDS special study

Nancy G. Kutner, Kirsten L. Johansen, George Kaysen, Sarah Pederson, Shu Cheng Chen, Lawrence Y. Agodoa, Paul W. Eggers, Glenn M. Chertow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Background and objectives: The Comprehensive Dialysis Study (CDS) aimed to understand factors contributing to physical, functional, and nutritional health status among patients starting dialysis. Design, setting, participants, & measurements: A phone interview survey was conducted with patients from a geographically stratified national random sample of dialysis units, and quarterly serum samples were obtained for patients at a preidentified subset of units. The phone survey collected standardized measures of physical activity, employment and disability status, perceived health and well-being, and dietary intake. Serum samples were obtained to measure prealbumin, albumin, creatinine, normalized protein catabolic rate, and C-reactive protein. To comply with restrictions required under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), dialysis unit personnel could not participate in any research-related activities. Results: Overall participation rate was 18.5%. One thousand six hundred forty-six patients affiliated with 295 dialysis units completed the phone survey; 361 patients affiliated with 68 dialysis units also completed a dietary intake survey, with 269 providing serum samples. Despite challenges in the design and implementation of CDS, the population was diverse and results should be generalizable. Conclusions: Constraints within the dialysis industry and HIPAA requirements render the assembly of nationally representative cohorts extremely difficult. Nevertheless, the CDS represents the largest cohort of incident dialysis patients containing detailed information on self-reported physical activity and dietary intake and is one of few cohorts simultaneously measuring laboratory proxies of nutrition and inflammatory status. Data from CDS can be used to inform the design of interventions addressing several conditions that affect longevity and health status in ESRD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)645-650
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology
  • Transplantation
  • Epidemiology
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Medicine(all)


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