, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 18-24

Serum cholesterol and risk of end-stage renal disease in a cohort of mass screening

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To evaluate the relative risk of end-stage renal disease (ESRD), indicated by basal serum cholesterol levels, we examined data from the 1983 community-based, mass screening registry and chronic dialysis program in Okinawa, Japan.


Data on serum cholesterol were available for a total of 38,053 subjects (17,859 men and 20,194 women), in addition to dipstick urinalysis and blood pressure data. Between 1983 and the end of 1995, we identified 99 ESRD dialysis patients (62 men and 37 women) among the screening participants.


The cumulative incidence and risk of ESRD were calculated for the following quartile definitions of serum cholesterol level: ≤167 mg/dL, 168 to 191 mg/dL, 192 to 217 mg/dL, and ≥218 mg/dL. The cumulative incidence of ESRD was 179, 216, 315, and 334 per 100,000 screened subjects in the respective serum cholesterol level quartiles. Logistic regression analysis on the prediction of ESRD by serum cholesterol level quartile was done, and the odds ratio (95% confidence interval) was 1.25 (1.04–1.49). However, the significance was lost when adjusted for the results of urinalysis or blood pressure measurements. Serum cholesterol levels were dependent on the degree of proteinuria by dipstick and blood pressure findings.


The present study suggests that serum cholesterol may not be an independent predictor of ESRD. Whether the result was due to racial difference or was organ specific remains to be determined.