Blood lead level: an overlooked risk of carpal tunnel syndrome in hemodialysis patients.

Author(s) Huang, W.H.; Hu, C.C.; Yen, T.H.; Hsu, C.W.; Weng, C.H.
Journal Ren Fail
Date Published 2019 Nov
Abstract

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a severe complication observed in long-term maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) patients. The most common cause of CTS is dialysis-related β2-microglobulin amyloidosis, which is associated with inflammation and oxidative stress in dialysis patients. Patients on MHD have higher blood lead levels (BLLs) than the general population. Lead (Pb) exposure in chronic dialysis patients has been noted to induce oxidative stress and inflammation. Therefore, lead-related inflammation and oxidative stress might contribute to CTS. The medical records of 866 MHD patients were reviewed. Two hundred and thirty-four patients with symptoms of CTS were surveyed by senior neurologists via physical examinations and nerve conduction studies. Patients in this study were stratified into groups with low-normal (<10 μg/dL), high-normal (10 to 20 μg/dL), and abnormal (>20 μg/dL) BLLs. The associations between CTS and BLLs and the clinical data were analyzed. Multivariate logistic regression analyses showed that Log BLL (OR: 54.810, 95% CI: 13.622-220.54,  < .001), high-normal BLLs (OR: 4.839, 95% CI: 2.262-10.351,  < .001) with low-normal BLL as a reference, high BLLs (OR: 12.952, 95% CI: 5.391-31.119,  < .001) with low-normal BLL as a reference, and a BLL >12.3 μg/dL (OR: 6.827, 95% CI: 3.737-12.472,  < .001) were positively associated with CTS according to three different analyses. In conclusion, blood lead levels were positively associated with CTS in patients on MHD. Dialysis patients should pay more attention to their environmental exposure to Pb. Avoidance of environmental Pb may reduce the incidence of CTS in MHD patients. Future studies will address the role of Pb in the pathophysiology of CTS in this patient population.

DOI 10.1080/0886022X.2019.1657894
ISSN 1525-6049
Citation Huang W-, Hu C-, Yen T-, Hsu C-, Weng C-. Blood lead level: an overlooked risk of carpal tunnel syndrome in hemodialysis patients. Ren Fail. 2019;41(1):786-793.