Nephrotoxin Exposure and Acute Kidney Injury in Adults

Article: Nephrotoxin Exposure and Acute Kidney Injury in Adults

Authors: Benjamin R Griffin, Linder Wendt, Mary Vaughan-Sarrazin, Hermann Hounkponou  Heather S Reisinger, Stuart L Goldstein, Diana Jalal, Jason Misurac

Journal: Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2023 Feb 1;18(2):163-172

Background: Rates of nephrotoxic AKI are not well described in adults due to lack of a clear definition, debate over which drugs should be considered nephrotoxins, and illness-related confounding. Nephrotoxic Injury Negated by Just-in Time Action (NINJA), a program that reduces rates of nephrotoxic AKI in pediatric populations, may be able to address these concerns, but whether NINJA can be effectively applied to adults remains unclear.

Methods: In this retrospective cohort study conducted at the University of Iowa Hospital, we included adult patients admitted to a general hospital floor for ≥48 hours during 2019. The NINJA algorithm screened charts for high nephrotoxin exposure and AKI. After propensity score matching, Cox proportional hazard modeling was used to evaluate the relationship between nephrotoxic exposure and all-stage AKI, stage 2-3 AKI, or death. Additional analyses evaluated the most frequent nephrotoxins used in this population.

Results: Of 11,311 patients, 1527 (16%) had ≥1 day of high nephrotoxin exposure. Patients with nephrotoxic exposures subsequently developed AKI in 29% of cases, and 22% of all inpatient AKI events met nephrotoxic AKI criteria. Common nephrotoxins were vancomycin, iodinated contrast dye, piperacillin-tazobactam, acyclovir, and lisinopril. After propensity score matching, Cox proportional hazard models for high nephrotoxin exposure were significantly associated with all AKI (hazard ratio [HR] 1.43, 1.19-1.72, P<0.001), stage 2-3 AKI (HR 1.78, 1.18-2.67, P=0.006), and mortality (HR 2.12, 1.09-4.11, P=0.03).

Conclusions: Nephrotoxin exposure in adults is common and is significantly associated with AKI development, including stage 2-3 AKI.

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