Linee guida sull'inizio e la sospensione del trattamento emodialitico

Nicola Panocchia, Roberta Minacori, Dario Sacchini, Luigi Tazza, Antonio Gioacchino Spagnolo

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivistapeer review


The clinical issue of initiation of and withdrawal from dialysis for patients with chronic renal failure (CRF) is addressed evaluating for which patients the treatment is not indicated. Therefore, the initial question on the provision of dialytic procedure for all the patients who might obtain a benefit was alternated by an opposite problem: to understand, among the many candidates for dialysis, those who wouldn’t have a benefit. In fact, if the treatment is not able to offer the expected effectiveness, so configuring a medical futility or where the burdensomeness of the treatment (side effects, complications, etc.) exceed the benefits, it is ethically more appropriate not to start (or possibly withdraw) the treatment itself. Some scientific societies have edited specific guidelines. The article focuses on the last version of the Shared Decision Making in the Appropriate Initiation of and Withdrawal from Dialysis, Clinical Practice Guideline of the U.S. Renal Physician Association (RPA), that takes into account changes in epidemiology and clinical management of patients eligible for renal replacement treatment: mainly, increasingly advanced age, cardiovascular and metabolic disorders and comorbidity. The most compelling clinical issue is the identification of patients whose dialysis treatment is not beneficial in terms of survival and quality of health. Moreover, the RPA guidelines highlight the relevance of shared decision making as elective way for the physician-patient relationship. From the bioethics perspective, some lexical changes could reflect cultural changes: e.g., the term informed consent/refusal has been replaced by “information to the patient”, as well as “advance directive” by advance care planning. Some commentaries to RPA guidelines argue in favor of the reverse of some paradigms of North American bioethics: for example the overcoming of principle of autonomy towards a presumed restore of the principle of beneficence/ non-maleficence. In the appendix, a “Proposal for ethical guidelines for an appropriate indication for dialysis treatment” is offered to the debate. The document born from a common reflection and interaction between Hemodialysis Unit personnel of “Agostino Gemelli” Teaching Hospital (Rome, Italy) and clinical ethics consultations provided by ethicists of the Institute of Bioethics of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (Rome, Italy) along the SINTEA Project (Integrated Service for Applied Bioethics) presented for the first time during a scientific meeting in 2010.
Titolo tradotto del contributo[Autom. eng. transl.] Guidelines for starting and stopping hemodialysis treatment
Lingua originaleItalian
pagine (da-a)235-260
Numero di pagine26
RivistaMedicina e Morale
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2012


  • Chronic renal failure
  • Clinical ethics
  • clinical guidelines
  • etica clinica
  • insufficienza renale cronica
  • linee-guida cliniche


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