Treatment Options For Chronic Kidney Disease
There are multiple life-saving treatment options available if you are diagnosed with chronic kidneys disease. It is recommended to consult with your physician to determine the appropriate types of care based on your healthcare needs.
What Is Kidney Dialysis
Kidney Dialysis is a treatment that removes wastes, toxins and extra fluid from your blood when your kidneys are no longer able to do so effectively. There are two types of dialysis: hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Hemodialysis cleans your blood using a machine with a special filter called a dialyzer. The blood travels from your body through tubes into the dialyzer, which filters out wastes and extra water.
The cleaned blood then flows through another set of tubes back into your body. Peritoneal dialysis is a process that removes wastes and extra water from your body using the lining of your abdomen to filter your blood. A special solution travels through a tube into your abdomen. The solution draws wastes and extra water from tiny blood vessels in your stomach back into the solution, which is then drained from your abdomen through the tube.
In-Center Dialysis Treatment
In-center hemodialysis treatment involves going to a kidney dialysis center three times per week for about three-to-five hours per visit. This may depend on the treatment schedule your doctor prescribes. During your visit, you are connected to the dialysis machine via your hemodialysis access. Your blood is filtered outside of your body through a dialyzer to remove unwanted waste, toxins and excess fluid. The filtered blood is then returned to your body. In-center hemodialysis is performed with the supervision and support of a dedicated care team.
Home Dialysis Treatment
Home hemodialysis treatment is similar to in-center treatment, except you have the flexibility and comfort of being in your own home during treatment while having access to an on-call nurse over the phone. Your blood is still filtered outside of your body through a dialyzer to remove unwanted waste, toxins and excess fluids and then returned to your body.
Home peritoneal dialysis treatment uses blood vessels in the lining of your abdomen to naturally filter waste from your blood. During the treatment, a cleansing solution called dialysate is sent through a catheter to your peritoneal (abdominal) cavity, where it absorbs waste and toxins from blood vessels in the peritoneum. It is then drained back out and discarded. Peritoneal dialysis is typically done more frequently, so waste and toxins in your blood don’t have a chance to build up as much between treatments.
A kidney transplant involves a healthy kidney that is taken from a live or deceased donor and is surgically placed into someone with kidney failure. It provides an opportunity for your kidneys to return to their natural functions rather than relying on alternative treatments. You should be aware of the benefits as well as the possible risks associated with a kidney transplant. It's important to educate yourself on all aspects of possible outcomes that may accompany this life-changing therapy.
Conservative Treatment (Palliative Care)
Some people choose to forgo taking dialysis treatments and getting a kidney transplant for conservative treatment, also known as palliative care. Conservative treatment manages the symptoms of kidney disease with a mixture of medical, emotional, social, spiritual, and practical care and support for the person affected with the disease as well as their family members.