BACKGROUND: Creatinine clearance after cimetidine administration (Cim-CreatClr) was once proposed as a method of glomerular filtration rate (GFR) measurement, but has been largely abandoned. We investigated whether a new short procedure for Cim-CreatClr determination could be considered an appropriate method for GFR measurement.
METHODS: A 150-min protocol involving oral cimetidine administration was developed to determine Cim-CreatClr. In total, 168 patients underwent simultaneous assessments of creatinine clearance before and after cimetidine administration [basal creatinine clearance (Basal-CreatClr) and Cim-CreatClr, respectively], renal iohexol clearance and plasma iohexol clearance (R-iohexClr and P-iohexClr, respectively). We compared the agreement between the various methods of GFR measurement, using Bland-Altman plots to determine biases, precisions (standard deviation of the biases) and accuracy (proportions of GFR values falling within 10, 15 and 30% of the mean: P10, P15 and P30, respectively).
RESULTS: After cimetidine administration, Basal-CreatClr decreased by 19.8% [95% reference limits of agreement (95% LoA): -2.2 to 41.7%]. The bias between Cim-CreatClr and P-iohexClr was -0.6% (95% LoA -26.8 to 28%); the precision was 14.0%; P10, P15 and P30 were 57.1% [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 49.3 to 64.7%], 73.2% (95% CI 65.8 to 79.7%) and 97.0% (95% CI 93.2 to 99.0%), respectively. Due to the positive bias (16.7%; 95% LoA -3.6 to 36.9%) of Cim-CreatClr relative to R-iohexClr, accuracy of Cim-CreatClr relative to R-iohexClr was poor despite a good precision (10.3%).
CONCLUSIONS: Our study shows a high level of agreement between Cim-CreatClr and P-iohexClr. These results suggest that this short Cim-CreatClr procedure is a valid method for GFR measurement, which might be useful, in particular, in situations in which P-iohexClr is not suitable or not available.