Renal function recovery (RFR), defined as the discontinuation of dialysis after 3 months of replacement therapy, is reported in about 1% of chronic dialysis patients. The role of personalized, intensive dialysis schedules and of resuming low-protein diets has not been studied to date. This report describes three patients with RFR who were recently treated at a new dialysis unit set up to offer intensive hemodialysis. All three patients were females, aged 73, 75, and 78 years. Kidney disease included vascular-cholesterol emboli, diabetic nephropathy and vascular and dysmetabolic disease. At time of RFR, the patients had been dialysis-dependent from 3 months to 1 year. Dialysis was started with different schedules and was progressively discontinued with a "decremental" policy, progressively decreasing number and duration of the sessions. A moderately restricted low-protein diet (proteins 0.6 g/kg/day) was started immediately after dialysis discontinuation. The most recent update showed that two patients are well off dialysis for 5 and 6 months; the diabetic patient died (sudden death) 3 months after dialysis discontinuation. Within the limits of small numbers, our case series may suggest a role for personalized dialysis treatments and for including low-protein diets in the therapy, in enhancing long-term RFR in elderly dialysis patients.
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