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BACKGROUND/AIMS: Adult polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) has a predictable natural history and the relative lack of co-morbidity allows a relatively unconfounded assessment of survival. We examined whether survival on renal replacement treatment (RRT) has improved over the last four decades compared to that in the general population. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of all patients with ADPKD who received RRT between 1971 and 2000 at the Oxford Kidney Unit. The main exposure was period of start of treatment (1971-1985 vs. 1986-2000) and the key outcome was overall survival. Standard Cox regression techniques were used to assess the association between these baseline variables and survival. RESULTS: Age at start of RRT (HR per 1 year 1.08; 95% CI 1.06-1.10) and presence of a functioning transplant (HR 0.22; 95% CI 0.16-0.31) were associated with improved survival in unadjusted analyses. After adjustment for age the period of treatment also became a significant predictor of overall survival (HR 0.67; 95% CI 0.47-0.97). CONCLUSIONS: Survival on RRT appears to have improved and exceeds that observed in the general population, such that RRT now provides almost two-thirds of the life expectancy of the general population, compared to about half in earlier decades.

Original publication




Journal article


Nephron Clin Pract

Publication Date





c42 - c47


Adult, Cohort Studies, Comorbidity, Cyclosporine, England, Female, Hematinics, Humans, Immunosuppressive Agents, Kaplan-Meier Estimate, Kidney Failure, Chronic, Kidney Transplantation, Life Expectancy, Male, Middle Aged, Polycystic Kidney, Autosomal Dominant, Proportional Hazards Models, Renal Replacement Therapy, Retrospective Studies, Survival Rate