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Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Headache associated with hemodialysis in patients with end-stage renal disease in India: A common yet overlooked comorbidity


1 Department of Medicine, Shree Krishna Hospital and Pramukhswami Medical College, Bhaikaka University, Karamsad, Anand, Gujarat, India
2 Department of Biostatistics, Central Research Services, Shree Krishna Hospital and Pramukhswami Medical College, Bhaikaka University, Karamsad, Anand, Gujarat, India
3 Department of Neurology, Shree Krishna Hospital and Pramukhswami Medical College, Bhaikaka University, Karamsad, Anand, Gujarat, India

Correspondence Address:
Soaham D Desai,
Department of Neurology, Shree Krishna Hospital and Pramukhswami Medical College, Bhaikaka University, Karamsad, Anand, Gujarat
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aian.aian_404_21

Background: Headache is a frequently encountered symptom among patients undergoing hemodialysis. Aim: The aim of this study was to elucidate the prevalence of hemodialysis associated headache (HDH), its possible etiology, its effect on the patients and steps taken in the management of the condition in Indian patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Methods and Materials: A cross-sectional study was carried out amongst 128 consenting patients with ESRD on regular hemodialysis at a tertiary care medical teaching hospital over a period of 3 months to assess for prevalence of HDH and factors related to it. The pre hemodialysis serum electrolytes level, pre and post hemodialysis systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) were recorded. Visual analogue scale (VAS) and patient health questionnaire-9 (PHQ9) was administered to the patients. t Test and Chi-square test were applied to find the association between HDH and various postulated factors and a regression analysis was performed. Results: Among 128 patients, 48 (37.5%) (men 18 [37.5%], women 30 [62.5%]) were found to have HDH. The mean headache severity scores on (VAS) was 4.5 ± 1.74. Patients having HDH had their mean PHQ9 scores 7.56 ± 4.51. Most patients had headaches in the first hour of dialysis and were located in the frontal and temporal part of the head. No statistically significant difference was found in the electrolyte levels between patients having HDH and without HDH. The headache was moderate in most but needed a paracetamol tablet to relieve the headache. Conclusion: Nearly one-third of patients undergoing dialysis have HDH, and it is associated with mild to moderate depression. The factors leading to HDH and its management need to be evaluated further to improve the quality of life of patients with ESRD on dialysis.


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