Treatment of patients with acute renal failure during Marmara earthquake

Yürügen B., Emir G., Ersoy A.

EDTNA-ERCA Journal, vol.27, no.4, pp.174-177, 2001 (Refereed Journals of Other Institutions) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 27 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2001
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/j.1755-6686.2001.tb00172.x
  • Title of Journal : EDTNA-ERCA Journal
  • Page Numbers: pp.174-177


Crush syndrome or traumatic rhabdomyolysis is a serious and epidemic clinical case that develops among casualties of earthquakes or other catastrophic events. Hypocalcaemia is one of the main symptoms that accompanies crush syndrome. It is essential that immediate IV volume replacement treatment be initiated for such patients, which is known to positively affect prognosis and help prevent the development of acute renal failure. Following the earthquake of 17th August 1999 in the north-west of Turkey, 333 casualties were hospitalised in the Medical Faculty of Uludag University. 60 (18%) of these patients [34 males (56.6%) and 26 females (43.4%)] received haemodialysis treatment. The average number of HD sessions received by the patients was 48. Intermittent HD applied to 44 patients (73.3%) was the preferred method of treatment. Fluid overload and azotemia were the leading indications (76.6%) for dialysis. The lower extremities were mainly injured in these patients [33 (55%)]. Therefore, subclavian catheterisation was preferred in those patients with trauma at this site. 594 (67.1%) HD sessions were applied with limited heparin due to the risk of bleeding. Hypotension in 94 patients (61%) and thrombosis in 60 (45.7%) were the main complications. Of the complications not due to HD, infection in 23 patients (38.3%) was the most significant. 21 patients (35%) were lost during the treatment. It was thanks to the sacrifices and co-operation among national and international medical teams that the mortality rate was low.