INTRODUCTION: Definition, prevention, and management of acute kidney injury (AKI) and the optimal prescription and delivery of renal replacement therapy (RRT) are currently matters of ongoing discussion. Due to the lack of definitive published literature, a wide gap might exist between routine clinical practice and available recommendations. The aim of this survey was to explore the clinical approach to AKI and RRT in a broad population of nephrologists and intensivists participating in the 36th International course on AKI and Continuous RRT (CRRT), held in Vicenza in June 2018. The responses of the 369 participants to a questionnaire on several aspects of critical care nephrology were analyzed and detailed.
RESULTS: Approximately 450 participants attended the course; of these, 369 (82%) correctly filled the survey forms. According to the reported answers, the average incidence of AKI in respondents' intensive care units (ICU) was 26.8% (SD ±15.99) and AKI requiring dialysis was 13% (SD ±29.7). Sixty-four percent of participants defined AKI as an increase in serum creatinine (SCr) up to 0.99 mg/dL (SD ±0.88 mg/dL); 2.4% defined AKI as an increase in urea nitrogen up to 83.6 mg/dL (SD ±36.6 mg/dL); 33.6% defined AKI as decreased urine output to less than 1 mL/kg/h (SD ±0.6 mL/kg/h). The most common answer to classify AKI was Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO; 41%) criteria. Most of the participants (25%) think novel biomarkers should replace SCr on daily routine laboratory screening, and Cystatin C was the most commonly used biomarker (19%). The use of diuretics in AKI patients was high (62%). Continuous RRT (59%) and heparin anticoagulation (42%) appeared to be the most common approaches in ICU.
CONCLUSIONS: KDIGO appeared to be widely applied. The use of novel biomarkers has also emerged in recent years even if some consistent cost-benefit evidence is still lacking. There is a trend of increased awareness about AKI and extracorporeal treatments seem to be increasingly applied, when compared to previous surveys. Educational efforts and AKI management standardization still appear to be a fundamental aspect to harmonize therapeutic approaches and improve patients' outcomes.