Author(s): Saland JM, Ginsberg HN
Chronic renal insufficiency (CRI) is associated with a characteristic dyslipidemia. Findings in children with CRI largely parallel those in adults. Moderate hypertriglyceridemia, increased triglyceride-rich lipoproteins (TRL) and reduced high-density lipoproteins (HDL) are the most usual findings, whereas total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) remain normal or modestly increased. Qualitative abnormalities in lipoproteins are common, including small dense LDL, oxidized LDL, and cholesterol-enriched TRL. Measures of lipoprotein lipase and hepatic lipase activity are reduced, and concentrations of apolipoprotein C-III are markedly elevated. Still an active area of research, major pathophysiological mechanisms leading to the dyslipidemia of CRI include insulin resistance and nonnephrotic proteinuria. Sources of variability in the severity of this dyslipidemia include the degree of renal impairment and the modality of dialysis. The benefits of maintaining normal body weight and physical activity extend to those with CRI. In addition to multiple hypolipidemic pharmaceuticals, fish oils are also effective as a triglyceride-lowering agent, and the phosphorous binding agent sevelamer also lowers LDL-C. Emerging classes of hypolipidemic agents and drugs affecting sensitivity to insulin may impact future treatment. Unfortunately, cardiovascular benefit has not been convincingly demonstrated by any trial designed to study adults or children with renal disease. Therefore, it is not possible at this time to endorse general recommendations for the use of any agent to treat dyslipidemia in children with chronic kidney disease.