What is Dialysis?
Dialysis is a treatment that does some of the things done by healthy kidneys. It is needed when your own kidneys can no longer take care of your body's needs.
You need dialysis when you develop end stage kidney failure --usually by the time you lose about 85 to 90 percent of your kidney function and have a GFR of greater than 15.
What does Dialysis do?
When your kidneys fail, dialysis keeps your body in balance by:
- ⦁ Removing waste, salt and extra water to prevent them from building up in the body
- ⦁ keeping a safe level of certain chemicals in your blood, such as potassium, sodium and bicarbonate
- ⦁ Helping to control blood pressure
Types of Dialysis
There are two types of dialysis:
(1) Hemodialysis Dialysis and
(2) Peritoneal Dialysis.
Where is Dialysis done?
Dialysis can be done in a hospital, in a dialysis unit that is not part of a hospital, or at home. You and your doctor will decide which place is best, based on your medical condition and your wishes.
Cost of Dialysis
ONE (1) DIALYSIS SESSION: N25,000
TWO (2) PATIENTS: N50,000
THREE (3) PATIENTS: N75,000
FOUR (4) PATIENTS: N100,000
What is Hemodialysis
In hemodialysis, an artificial kidney (hemodialyzer) is used to remove waste and extra chemicals and fluid from your blood. To get your blood into the artificial kidney, the doctor needs to make an access (entrance) into your blood vessels. This is done by minor surgery to your arm or leg.
Sometimes, an access is made by joining an artery to a vein under your skin to make a bigger blood vessel called a fistula. However, if your blood vessels are not adequate for a fistula, the doctor may use a soft plastic tube to join an artery and a vein under your skin. This is called a graft.
Occasionally, an access is made by means of a narrow plastic tube, called a catheter, which is inserted into a large vein in your neck. This type of access may be temporary, but is sometimes used for long-term treatment.
How Long do Hemodialysis Treatment last?
The time needed for your dialysis depends on:
⦁ how well your kidneys work
⦁ how much fluid weight you gain between treatments
⦁ how much waste you have in your body
⦁ how big you are
⦁ the type of artificial kidney used
Usually, each hemodialysis treatment lasts about four hours and is done three times per week.
A type of hemodialysis called high-flux dialysis may take less time. You can speak to your doctor to see if this is an appropriate treatment for you.
What is Peritoneal Dialysis?
In this type of dialysis, your blood is cleaned inside your body. The doctor will do surgery to place a plastic tube called a catheter into your abdomen (belly) to make an access.
During the treatment, your abdominal area (called the peritoneal cavity) is slowly filled with dialysate through the catheter.
The blood stays in the arteries and veins that line your peritoneal cavity. Extra fluid and waste products are drawn out of your blood and into the dialysate.
There are several kinds of peritoneal dialysis but two major ones are: Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD) and Automated Peritoneal Dialysis (APD).
Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD) is the only type of peritoneal dialysis that is done without machines.
You do this yourself, usually four or five times a day at home and/or at work. You put a bag of dialysate (about two quarts) into your peritoneal cavity through the catheter.
The dialysate stays there for about four or five hours before it is drained back into the bag and thrown away. This is called an exchange. You use a new bag of dialysate each time you do an exchange.
While the dialysate is in your peritoneal cavity, you can go about your usual activities at work, at school or at home.
Automated Peritoneal Dialysis (APD) usually is done at home using a special machine called a cycler.
This is similar to CAPD except that a number of cycles (exchanges) occur. Each cycle usually lasts 1-1/2 hours and exchanges are done throughout the night while you sleep.
No. Dialysis does some of the work of healthy kidneys, but it does not cure your kidney disease. You will need to have dialysis treatments for your whole life unless you are able to get a kidney transplant.