Background: Protein-calorie malnutrition is a significant problem for patients with end-stage renal disease. Increased resting energy expenditure may be an important contributing factor. We postulate that resting energy expenditure in the different stages of renal disease and treatments may be different. Methods: Resting energy expenditure was measured using a whole-room indirect calorimeter (metabolic chamber) along with nutritional parameters and body composition after 12-hour fasting in 15 patients with advanced chronic renal failure patients, 15 patients on chronic hemodialysis, and 10 patients on peritoneal dialysis. Patients on hemodialysis were assessed on a non-dialysis day. A 2-day dietary recall was used to assess energy intake. Results: Resting energy expenditure, adjusted for fat-free mass, was similar in patients on hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis but significantly higher than in patients with chronic renal failure (p <.05). Resting energy expenditure in all patients were generally higher (10% to 20%) than predicted values using standard equations derived in normal and obese populations, whereas daily energy intake was less (26% to 34%) than energy expenditure for all groups, adjusted for light daily activity. Conclusions: End-stage renal disease patients displayed increases in resting energy expenditure over the predicted values derived using normal populations. Resting energy expenditure was significantly higher in patients receiving dialysis, regardless of the modality, than patients with chronic renal failure. Daily energy intake was substantially less than required in all patient groups studied, suggesting that patients with renal failure could develop protein-calorie malnutrition because of increased resting energy expenditure, which is exacerbated by dialysis.
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