Abstract: SA-OR101

Causes of Death in Patients Who Survive a Hospitalization with AKI

Session Information

  • What Happens After AKI
    November 04, 2017 | Location: Room 295, Morial Convention Center
    Abstract Time: 04:30 PM - 04:42 PM

Category: Acute Kidney Injury

  • 003 AKI: Clinical and Translational


  • Silver, Samuel A., Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
  • Harel, Ziv, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • McArthur, Eric, Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Nash, Danielle Marie, London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Acedillo, Rey R., Kingston Health Sciences Centre, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
  • Kitchlu, Abhijat, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Garg, Amit X., London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Chertow, Glenn Matthew, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, California, United States
  • Wald, Ron, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Mortality after an acute kidney injury (AKI) episode is high, but the causes of death are not well described. We sought to better understand causes of death in patients who survive a hospitalization with AKI, and hypothesized that cardiovascular disease would account for most deaths after hospital discharge.


We conducted a population-based study of residents in Ontario, Canada, who survived a hospitalization with AKI from 2003-2013. We defined AKI with validated ICD-10 diagnosis codes. Using linked administrative databases, we categorized cause of death in the year following hospital discharge as cardiovascular, cancer, infection-related, or other. We calculated standardized mortality ratios (SMR) to compare the cause of death in survivors of AKI to the general adult population, and used Cox proportional hazards modeling to estimate determinants of death.


Of the 156,690 patients discharged after an AKI episode, 43,422 (28%) died in the subsequent year. The most common causes of death were cardiovascular disease (28%) and cancer (28%), with respective SMRs nearly six-fold (5.81, 95% CI 5.70-5.92) and nearly eight-fold (7.87, 95% CI 7.72-8.02) higher relative to the general population. The highest SMRs were for cancer-related mortality, specifically bladder cancer (18.24, 95% CI 17.10-19.41), gynecologic cancer (16.83, 95% CI 15.63-18.07), and leukemia (14.99, 95% CI 14.16-15.85). In addition to older age and nursing home residence, factors most strongly associated with one-year mortality were cancer (hazard ratio [HR] 1.62, 95% CI 1.58-1.65) and inpatient chemotherapy (2.03, 95% CI 1.90-2.17).


Among survivors of a hospitalization with AKI, cancer-related death was as common as cardiovascular death; moreover, cancer-related deaths occurred at the highest rates relative to the general adult population. In addition to modifying the risk of subsequent cardiovascular disease, strategies are needed to care for and counsel patients with cancer who experience AKI.