Dialysis

Kidneys

We already know that they are two bean-shaped structures that lie just below the rib cage. They are used in eliminating waste and fluids from our body. Besides this primary function, they are helpful in reducing the blood pressure of the individual and ensures that the bones retain their strength.Kidneys are also useful in keeping the right amount of minerals in the blood. The qunatuity of sodium and potassium in your blood is maintained by the kidney. They are also useful in the manufacturing of a hormone which helps the body in creating RBC. The kidneys might stop functioning as a result of some disease. There is a requirement of kidney failure treatment in such cases.

CONTENTS

Dialysis –what is it?

If the kidneys stop functioning, the process of dialysis is performed. There are two types of dialysis-

  1. Hemodialysis-The blood of the body is passed through a filter outside the body and returned to the body after cleaning. Hemodialysis is performed at a dialysis center or at home.
  2. Peritoneal dialysis-In this process, the blood is cleaned within the body. The fluid is put into the abdomen with the sole purpose of absorbing the waste. The fluid is drained away after it has performed this function. This type of dialysis is performed at home.

WHEN DOES ONE NEED DIALYSIS?

When the function of the kidney becomes so impaired that it is not able to perform function sufficient for the body, then the person must opt for either transplant or dialysis.Kidney failure shows symptoms such as nausea and fatigue accompanied by swelling and vomiting. You can also confirm the functionality of the kidneys by checking the toxic levels in the blood.The timing of the dialysis will depend on the age, overall health, and the test results. The process of dialysis will make your body healthier but the process is very time-consuming.

HEMODIALYSIS

The process has many variations. It can be done with various devices like a fistula, a graft or a catheter.With a fistula, an artery and a vein are joined together under the skin of the arm, but it takes 6 weeks for the body to heal with a fistula.

A-V GRAFT

A-V graft involves a plastic tube to join the artery and the vein. Though the healing is fast, it doesn’t last as long as fistula. It also poses a higher risk of infection

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A CATHETER (CENTRAL VENOUS CATHETER)

It enables the quick start of hemodialysis. It involves the insertion of a catheter in the neck or the groin region. The patient is made to lie on a chair. Two needles are placed in the fistula in the arm. The pump in the hemodialysis machine draws the blood of the patient and sends it to a machine called dialyzer. This machine acts as a kidney and filters out the excess salt, waste, and fluid. The cleaned blood is sent back into the body of the patient through the second needle. The session will be required three times a week and the session will last for 3-5 hours.

PERITONEAL DIALYSIS

This dialysis involves placing a catheter near your navel. After the body heals, the patient can perform the dialysis himself. A dialysis solution will be transferred from the bag into the belly. The special fluid will soak up the excess salt and fluids in the body. After a few hours, it is drained out into a separate bag.PD is of two types-

Continuous cycling peritoneal dialysis (CCPD): The exchange is done through machines

Continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD): The exchange needs to be done manually, by the patient’s hand.Most probably, you will need 4 -6 exchanges per day. It is best to consult the doctor about which type of exchange to opt for. Some patients opt for both types.

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