Improved Care and Prevention Improving dialysis treatment

Amit Garg, University of Western Ontario
Amit Garg, University of Western Ontario
Christopher McIntyre, University of Western Ontario
Christopher McIntyre, University of Western Ontario

MY TEMP (Dialysis Temperature) Trial


  • Dialysis is a life-saving treatment for patients with kidney failure. However, over 20% of patients die within one year of starting dialysis from heart disease or stroke. One reason for this may be related to the dialysis treatment itself. During dialysis, blood pressure often drops, and the flow of blood and oxygen to the heart and brain is reduced. Over time, this can cause significant damage and result in heart attacks, strokes, and even death.
  • New research shows that lowering the temperature of dialysis may help protect the heart and brain during dialysis by stabilizing blood pressure and improving blood flow to the heart and brain.


  • The project is a clinical trial, called MyTEMP, involving more than 7,500 hemodialysis patients at 70+ centres across Ontario to determine whether cooler, personalized dialysis temperatures can prevent heart attacks, strokes, and death.
  • The team performed an implementation study to address any barriers to implementing personalized dialysis temperature.
  • This simple and safe approach can be provided on any hemodialysis machine at no added cost and, if proven effective, can be easily adopted across Canada (and worldwide), and save our healthcare system millions of dollars by reducing the number hospitalizations for heart attacks and strokes.

Patient Engagement

  • “No research about me without me” is a statement that has helped develop activities in MyTEMP to establish patient partnerships. ICES-KDT uses a caregiver-partner to routinely incorporate patients in the development of research studies, such as the MyTEMP trial.
  • Hospital-based Renal Patient and Family Advisory Councils have provided input on the following aspects of MyTEMP:
    1. Trial outcomes of interest
    2. Altered methods of patient consent
    3. Patient letter to inform patients of MyTEMP and details on opting out of the trial intervention
  • The MyTEMP is currently designing a sub-study to investigate patient-reported outcomes that are important and relevant to hemodialysis patients.