Kidney function and the risk of sudden cardiac death in the general population

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Background: Chronic kidney disease increases sudden cardiac death (SCD) risk, but the association between kidney function and SCD in a general population is largely unknown. Therefore, we investigated the association between kidney function and SCD in a general middle-aged and elderly population. Methods: We included individuals aged ≥45 years from a prospective population-based cohort study. The association between kidney function assessments [estimated glomerular filtration rate based on serum creatinine (eGFRcreat), cystatin C (eGFRcys) or both (eGFRcreat-cys)] and SCD was investigated using Cox proportional-hazards and joint models. Absolute 10-year risks were computed using competing risk analyses. Mediation analyses were performed using a four-way decomposition method. Results: We included 9687 participants (median follow-up 8.9 years; mean age 65.3 years; 56.7% women; 243 SCD cases). Lower eGFRcys and eGFRcreat-cys were associated with increased SCD risk [hazard ratio (HR) 1.23, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.12-1.34 and HR 1.17, 95% CI 1.06-1.29, per 10 mL/min/1.73 m2 eGFR decrease]. A significant trend (P = 0.001) across eGFRcys categories was found, with an HR of 2.11 (95% CI 1.19-3.74) for eGFRcys <60 compared with eGFRcys >90 mL/min/1.73 m2. Comparing eGFRcys of 90 to 60 mL/min/1.73 m2, absolute 10-year risk increased from 1.0% to 2.5%. Identified subgroups at increased risk included older participants and participants with atrial fibrillation. The associations were not mediated by coronary heart disease, hypertension or diabetes. Conclusions: Reduced kidney function is associated with increased SCD risk in the general population, especially with eGFRcys. eGFRcys could be added to prediction models and screening programmes for SCD prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1524-1533
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Kidney Journal
Issue number8
Early online date17 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

The Rotterdam Study is funded by the Erasmus Medical Centre and Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Netherlands Organization for the Health Research and Development (ZonMw), the Research Institute for Diseases in the Elderly (RIDE), the Ministry of
Education, Culture and Science, the Ministry for Health, Welfare
and Sports, the European Commission (DG XII) and the Municipality of Rotterdam. None of the funders had any role in design
and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis and
interpretation of the data; and preparation, review, or approval
of the manuscript.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the ERA.


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