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Treatment of coronary heart disease in end-stage renal disease (dialysis)

Alfred K Cheung, MD
William L Henrich, MD, MACP
Section Editors
Jeffrey S Berns, MD
Steve J Schwab, MD
Bernard J Gersh, MB, ChB, DPhil, FRCP, MACC
Deputy Editor
Alice M Sheridan, MD


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) accounts for almost 50 percent of deaths in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) [1-4]. Of the cardiovascular deaths, approximately 20 percent can be attributed to the consequences of coronary heart disease (CHD). Patients with varying degrees of chronic kidney disease (CKD), but not yet dialysis dependent, also have a markedly increased risk of morbidity and mortality from CVD, including CHD. (See "Patient survival and maintenance dialysis" and "Chronic kidney disease and coronary heart disease".)

Most of the issues relating to CHD are similar in patients with and without kidney disease. This topic review will emphasize those features of the treatment of CHD that distinguish the dialysis patient from those without kidney disease. Related issues, such as secondary prevention and diagnosis of CHD in dialysis patients, are presented separately. (See "Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of coronary heart disease in end-stage renal disease (dialysis)" and "Risk factors and epidemiology of coronary heart disease in end-stage renal disease (dialysis)" and "Secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease in end-stage renal disease (dialysis)".)


There are two types of angina resulting from CHD, stable and unstable:

Stable angina refers to chest discomfort that occurs predictably and reproducibly at a certain level of exertion and is relieved with rest or nitroglycerin.

Unstable angina is an acute coronary syndrome that encompasses a variety of clinical conditions, including the new onset of angina, rest angina, an accelerating pattern of previously stable angina, post-myocardial infarction (MI) angina, and angina after a revascularization procedure. (See "Classification of unstable angina and non-ST elevation myocardial infarction".)

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Sep 18, 2017.
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