To explore the relationship between the administration of low-dose dopamine and outcomes in acute renal failure.Two hundred and fifty-six patients with acute renal failure randomized to the placebo arm of a multicenter intervention trial were examined. Independent correlates of low-dose (arbitrarily defined as < 3 micrograms/kg/min) and high-dose (arbitrarily defined as > or = 3 micrograms/kg/min) dopamine administration were identified. The relative risks of death, and the combined outcome of death or dialysis, were estimated using proportional hazards regression with and without adjustment for potential confounding and bias.There were 93 (36%) deaths documented; an additional 52 (20%) patients who survived required dialysis during the 60-day study period. The relative risk (RR) of death associated with the administration of low-dose dopamine was 1.11 (95% confidence interval [95% Cl] 0.66 to 1.89). The RR of death was modestly but not significantly reduced, after adjustment for the probability of treatment assignment and for relevant covariates (RR 0.82, 95% Cl 0.42 to 1.60). The RR of death or dialysis associated with the administration of low-dose dopamine was 1.10 (95% Cl 0.71 to 1.71). The RR of death or dialysis was attenuated by adjustment, but not significantly (RR 0.95, 95% Cl 0.58 to 1.58).There is insufficient evidence that the administration of low-dose dopamine improves survival or obviates the need for dialysis in persons with acute renal failure. The routine use of low-dose dopamine should be discouraged until a prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled trial establishes its safety and efficacy.
View details for Web of Science ID A1996UY64700008
View details for PubMedID 8686714