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Peritoneal Dialysis

This entry is part 2 of 5 in the series Toni B

Peritoneal Dialysis

I just do not get the concept of peritoneal dialysis. My doctor suggested it, but what is it and how does it really work? 

Peritoneal dialysis is a fluid based treatment, verses hemo-dialysis a blood based treatment. Peritoneal dialysis, also called PD, introduces fluid consisting of water, dextros, and calcium into the peritoneum lining in the abdomen, which uses a process of osmosis (from a greater concentration to a lower concentration) to remove the excess water and waste from the body in absence of functioning kidneys.

There are several benefits and caveats regarding PD: the first benefit is the ability to administer the treatment at home without a care partner, with the flexibility to conduct the treatment on your schedule.

One caveat is treatment is completely daily, no “breaks” in the schedule as in the traditional three times per week schedule of hemo-dialysis. However, PD mimics functioning kidneys because healthy kidneys function 24-hours/7days per week.

There are many more benefits health and lifestyle benefits. Check with your health care provider for the type of dialysis treatment that is best for you and your health and lifestyle needs.

 

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Kidney Dialysis

Kidney Dialysis

kidney dialysis and treatment for kidney failureKidney dialysis is the only known treatment for kidney failure. Dialysis replicates the kidneys process of removing water and toxins from the blood and filtering through the vital minerals and nutrients we need. Although the process can increase life expectancy by several years, it puts a strain on individuals with kidney failure. It is taxing both physically and financially and studies have shown that the process diminishes life expectancy.

Kidney dialysis works by filtering through the toxins and waste products found within the blood. Healthy kidney function safely and effectively filters through over 1500 liters of liquid that go through our bodies every day. Without kidney function, waste and toxins would build up in our blood and we would slip into a coma and die. It is therefore, crucial that individuals with kidney failure have access to kidney dialysis treatments and therapy.

While kidney dialysis does replace the kidneys process of filtration and elimination, it doesn’t produce the same effects within the body as functioning kidneys. As a part of the endocrine system, kidneys release certain chemicals and hormones into our body that regulate hormones and even blood pressure levels. As we can see, the kidneys are one of the most important organs in our bodies.

There are several different types of kidney dialysis treatments available. The following is a short list of these treatments.

  • Hemodialysis
  • Peritoneal Dialysis
  • General Dialysis

 

These varying treatment options provide patients with opportunities to choose how they will live their lives with kidney failure. Each option involves invasive surgery and constant attention. Risks associated with dialysis include infection, infertility, and risks associated with surgery. It is also imperative that patients pay close attention to these treatment options in order to receive the nutrients and assistance that their bodies need.

In the end, while kidney dialysis does improve the lifespan of an individual with kidney failure it also presents a host of challenges and unwanted responsibilities. Kidney dialysis does not guarantee recovery. In fact, it does little else than provide the basic function of the kidneys.