Aims: Traditional methods that use clinical parameters to determine dry weight in hemodialysis patients are inaccurate. This study aimed to compare clinical assessment of fluid status to sonographic parameters of fluid status in pediatric patients undergoing chronic hemodialysis. Methods: In a prospective observational study, pediatric patients maintained on chronic hemodialysis (ages 2.3-20 years) were evaluated clinically and sonographically before and after dialysis at 6 consecutive sessions. Sonographic parameters examined were number of lung B-lines as a measure of extravascular volume and inferior vena cava (IVC)/aorta ratio as a measure of intravascular volume. Clinical assessment of fluid status was compared to sonographic assessment. Results: Twelve patients were evaluated during 72 dialysis sessions. Sonographic parameters were significantly lower post-dialysis than pre-dialysis (B-lines number 4.5 ± 5 vs. 7.69 ± 7.46, p < 0.0001; IVC/aorta ratio 0.9 ± 0.2 vs. 1.1 ± 0.2, p < 0.0001, respectively). Ultrafiltration volume correlated with change in B-lines number during dialysis (r = 0.39, p < 0.01). Percent of blood volume drop correlated with post-dialysis IVC/aorta ratio (r = 0.48, p < 0.001). A higher percent of symptomatic episodes occurred with post-dialysis IVC/aorta ratio <0.8 versus ≥0.8 (39.1 vs. 15.2%, p = 0.036). Four patients were hypertensive, a clinical parameter implying fluid overload, in only one sonographic evaluation indicated fluid overload. Eight patients were clinically determined to be euvolemic, in three of them sonographic evaluation discovered covert fluids. Conclusion: Bedside ultrasound is a single modality that can be used to assess both extravascular and intravascular fluid status. It may contribute to clinical decisions differentiating fluid-related versus fluid-unrelated hypertension and identifying patients with covert fluids.
- Bedside ultrasound
- Fluid status