Chronic kidney disease can lead to permanent kidney damage. Once the kidneys become permanently damaged, there is no way of repairing the damage. Kidneys that are not functioning at full capacity will no longer be able to filter toxins and excess water from the body.
Permanently damaged kidneys cannot keep up with the workload of filtering excess water and other damaging toxins and waste from the blood. The result of this decreased filtering capacity can be swelling, high blood pressure, organ damage and other debilitating conditions that could lead to death.
Kidney disease is ranked by stages. Stage five kidney disease is the final stage or end stage. When a patient reaches stage five, they must explore the option of dialysis to maintain life.
There are two different types of dialysis. The two types are hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Both of these types of dialysis will help to filter the toxins and waste from your blood using an external machine.
Hemodialysis requires the insertion of a tube or vascular access point in your forearm or upper arm. This is done by a surgeon. This access point is for the insertion of the hemodialysis needles.
Hemodialysis is usually performed at a dialysis center. Conventional treatments are three times a week, but it is possible that daily treatments would be needed six times a week. Conventional hemodialysis takes about three to five hours and daily hemodialysis only takes about two hours. It is possible for hemodialysis to be performed at home with the right training and equipment.
Peritoneal dialysis requires the insertion of a tube into the abdomen. This is done by a surgeon. This thin catheter tube is what is used to allow access to the external dialysis machine.
Peritoneal dialysis can be performed at home. It can be done several times throughout the day or at night. It will take about thirty to forty minutes to do peritoneal dialysis throughout the day. But peritoneal dialysis must be done four or five times during the day. This is called a manual exchange.
If your doctor says it is okay, you can do a nightly exchange. This will involve using an automated cycler and requires that you be attached to the machine for ten to twelve hours each night. Both of these exchange devices, whether automated or manual, can be done at home or while traveling.
The choice of dialysis method depends upon a few factors. But the biggest factor in choosing the type of dialysis treatment is your lifestyle. If you want to continue working or to continue an active lifestyle, then peritoneal dialysis will be right for you.
Kidney disease and dialysis can be managed with the right mindset and a good collaboration with your healthcare team..