Treatment that Kidney Disease Patients Should Know: 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.

There are two types of dialysis which include:

Hemodialysis

This is the classical form of dialysis where the blood is carried via a tube into a dialysis machine which contains a semi permeable membrane. Inside the machine, blood is filtered through the membrane to remove excess water, waste products and toxins before being passed back into the body.

Each session of dialysis may last for around four hours and needs to be performed three times a week.

Peritoneal dialysis

With this type of dialysis, the peritoneal lining of the abdominal cavity is used as the membrane through which the blood is passed to filter out substances. A catheter is attached to the abdomen and a dialysis fluid is pumped into the peritoneal cavity. There, the dialysate sits and absorbs waste from passing blood before being flushed out. The process usually needs to be carried out four times a day with each session lasting around 30 to 40 minutes.

The dialysis machine:

• Takes all the blood from your body

• Filters the blood

• Removes water

• Balances electrolytes

• Returns that blood safely into circulation

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