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Abstract: FR-PO423

Feasibility of an Electronic Neurocognitive Battery for Assessing Cognitive Function in New-Start Hemodialysis Patients: A Pilot Study

Session Information

Category: Dialysis

  • 701 Dialysis: Hemodialysis and Frequent Dialysis


  • Schorr, Melissa, London Health Science Center, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Zalitach, Mariah Carey, London Health Sciences Centre & Lawson Research, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Wild, Conor J., Western University, London, Ontario, Canada
  • House, Cindy E., London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
  • McIntyre, Christopher W., London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada

Hemodialysis (HD) is the dominant form of renal replacement therapy used in Canada and around the world. It provides effective management of uremia, however, it is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Cognitive abnormalities are almost universal in HD patients and appear early after treatment. Impaired cognition leads to functional decline and reduced quality of life. Despite the prevalence of cognitive impairment in HD patients, it is not well characterized or a major focus of care. The purpose of this study is to confirm feasibility of utilizing the well-validated, culturally-independent Cambridge Brain Sciences (CBS) battery in this population. Additionally, we aim to assess need for assisstance in completing these tests, refine the process and provide initial data on the performance of CBS assessment in this population to allow planning of a large-scale study.


We included patients from eight HD centres across the London Health Sciences Centre program. Adult patients (age > 18 years), with no pre-existing dementia or communication impairment, receiving HD treatment for more than 30 days and less than 12 months were included. Cognitive function was assessed using the CBS cognitive test series. This consists of 12 tests that assess a broad range of cognitive abilities. Individual patients cognitive scores were compared against age and sex matched normal values.


Thirty patients completed a full set of testing and were included in our analysis. Across all measured domains, patients on HD scored significantly lower scores than their age and gender matched controls.


In hemodialysis patients, the CBS is a feasible tool that can be used in large-scale studies to identify domain-specific cognitive impairment. Preliminary results from this pilot study suggest significant cognitive impairment within the first year of hemodialysis.


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