Life Before And After Dialysis Begins
The human kidneys are two bean-shaped organs that are located in the belly region, right under the rib cage and diaphragm. Located one on each side of the spine, the kidneys' primary function is to remove the waste and extra fluid that the body accumulates during the day to day functioning. Apart from this, the kidneys also maintain healthy blood pressure, keep the bones strong, maintain proper mineral levels, and produce the hormone that promotes the formation of red blood cells. But what happens when the Kidney loses its ability to function due to an illness or injury?
An extreme condition in this scenario is referred to as Kidney failure and is potentially dangerous for the body. Marked by symptoms like nausea, vomiting, swelling, or fatigue, acute kidney failure can hamper daily body functions. This is where Kidney dialysis comes into the picture, wherein it performs the functions that kidneys can no longer perform.
What is Dialysis?
Dialysis is a form of treatment that takes over the normal functioning of the Kidney when the organ ceases or depletes in its working. There are usually 2 ways that Dialysis can be performed.
● Hemodialysis: When the blood is filtered outside the body using a Dialysis Machine and is then returned to the body. The process can be done at a facility or at home.
● Peritoneal Dialysis: The blood is cleaned inside the body by introducing a special fluid in the abdominal cavity. After cleaning the blood, the fluid is drained out.
What Should a Patient Know Before Dialysis?
Dialysis is a life changer for patients as the frequency of cleaning the blood through hemodialysis is '5 to 7 times a week'. For better understanding, patients can realize that while an active kidney works the whole day, a dialysis machine cannot be connected to a person the entire while to purify. That is why such a frequency of dialysis is required to keep the body healthy and in working condition.
A patient can always make the decision of whether he/she wants to make visits to the center for dialysis or wants to get it done at home. Not only does it require dietary changes, but it also demands conscious changes in our day to day functioning. It is also advised to the patients to get medical insurance before the beginning of Dialysis and to remember to maintain a work-life afterward as it is important for recovery.
After Dialysis Begins
Dialysis, as a procedure, is not a one-time, one-off short treatment option for people suffering from Kidney Failure. In one sitting, dialysis can range from about a couple of hours (at home, daily) to about 5 hours (in clinics, 5 times a week).
Before the beginning of Dialysis, the doctors surgically implant a device to easily reach our bloodstream. This is either done by creating a fistula (Joint Artery and Vein in Arm), a graft (Joint artery and vein with a tube), or a catheter (a thin tube in the vein of the neck). For performing dialysis, these sites receive two tubes to allow the blood to pass through the dialysis machine and back into the body. The patient is asked to wear comfortable clothing and is advised to fast for a considerable amount of time before the treatment.
It is generally a painless procedure. However, patients are always advised to talk to a doctor immediately if there is any pain during the treatment. There will be side effects of the treatment like nausea, vomiting, dry or itchy skin, muscle cramps, and fatigue, but these can be kept in check by making small adjustments to diet and water intake for the patient, with proper emphasis on salt and protein. A piece of great advice to Dialysis patients is to stop the use of alcohol, smoking, and drugs that can harm their kidneys further. The patient is also advised to limit their intake of potassium, phosphorus, sodium, and any form of liquid.
Kidney Dialysis is not the end of life, in fact, it is the road towards a better life. Therefore, we must make sure we are taking care of ourselves in all aspects to maintain quality of life. Keeping the spirits high and indulging in work is the best way to ensure normalcy.
Understanding your medical needs, we, at Medipulse, are equipped to provide you quality treatment and care, keeping all your worries at bay. Ranked as the best private hospital in Jodhpur, our Nephrology department is housed with the latest technology and equipment to provide a range of treatments from Dialysis to Transplant, etc. Our Nephrology Department is led under the expert guidance of Dr. Mayank Jain. Visit the department for consultancy and other information.