Dialysis is often misconstrued as a time-consuming, uncomfortable, and debilitating process. This could not be further from the truth. Many patients have the option to have their dialysis treatments performed at home. Doing so, they can enjoy a great quality of life and have the freedom to live an ordinary life.
Is home dialysis for everyone? Certainly not. If you have been diagnosed with chronic or end-stage kidney failure, you and your doctor will ultimately decide on the treatment option (and location) that’s right for you.
However, if you have any questions about home dialysis, consult the following frequently asked questions (FAQs) and how this procedure takes place.
Your healthcare provider will discuss all of your treatment options with you. Together, you all will decide which option is best for you.
Yes. Your nephrologist is the individual who fully understands your medical needs. They will continue to monitor your condition and direct your treatment.
As a home dialysis patient, you will be instructed to visit your doctor at least once a month to monitor your progress. Usually, you will spend time with a designated nurse who specializes in your training, as well as other specialists such as a social worker and a dietitian.
Your nephrologist will typically participate in these sessions. They may also call you in their office to provide a consultation. You’ll need to discuss the frequency of visits with your doctor.
You and your doctor will decide if home dialysis the perfect treatment option for you. Together, you’ll review the medical risks and quality of life benefits to make a sound decision that will ultimately benefit you.
Your doctor will use their judgment to determine if you’re the right candidate for home dialysis, based on your individual needs, medical condition, and psychological state.
If you have been diagnosed with chronic or end-stage kidney disease and want to work, then home dialysis may be an optimal choice for you. Home dialysis is also beneficial for patients who need a flexible schedule or want to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Overall, home dialysis can provide you with the convenience and freedom of taking your treatments on your schedule and giving you the lifesaving treatment you need.
Many reports have concluded that home dialysis improves the quality of life for patients.
You’d be surprised, but anyone can learn how to do home dialysis. Many people perform their own home dialysis with no assistance from a relative or medical professional. Sometimes, patients do have a dialysis partner who assists them during their treatments, and this person can be a caregiver, spouse, child, or parent.
While performing your dialysis treatment at home can take more time and effort in contrast to a center, there are tremendous lifestyle and clinical benefits involved.
The flexibility that comes with dialyzing at your convenience is valued by patients who:
If you elect to move forward with this treatment option, you and your dialysis partner must be willing to go through training on how to properly perform the procedure and use the equipment.
Many people fully complete their training courses in two weeks, but it can take much longer for hemodialysis.
You and your dialysis partner must also have sufficient vision and manual dexterity to operate the equipment, order supplies, fill out the necessary paperwork, etc.
Although you’re at home, you should call 9-1-1 immediately if a complication occurs. If a non-threatening emergency takes place, contact your doctor.
You and your dialysis partner will be trained to record specific information related to your treatment every day. This information will need to be forwarded to your doctor.
This information will help your doctor track your progress and direct your care accordingly. Depending on your progress, your doctor may alter your treatment plan.
Yes. Not only will you receive comprehensive training from your healthcare provider, but you will also receive 24/7 support if you have a question or if an emergency occurs.
Naturally, there is a risk to home dialysis, but certain parameters are put in place to keep you safe at all times.
Your nephrologist will direct your treatment and care, so there is no universal answer to this question. However, home dialysis makes it easier for your doctor to decide on the frequency of your treatment.
With that said, dialyzing more frequently can lead to the following benefits:
Performing home dialysis means that you’ll need to be willing to educate yourself immensely on the process and your medical condition.
It also means that you will need to assume more responsibility for your treatment. Your involvement in this procedure will influence your well-being and quality of life.
Home dialysis can only take place if your home allows. If you choose to dialyze at night, you can sleep in your own bed. Therefore, your home must have adequate space for the equipment.
If you are performing home hemodialysis, your home may need some electrical and plumbing modifications for the equipment.
You’ll need to speak with your doctor to be sure.
Deciding to perform home dialysis is a monumental choice you will need to make with your doctor. While you’ll receive the freedom and quality of life to cope with your condition, you’ll have to assume a large responsible for executing your treatments directly.
To learn more about home dialysis, give us a call at (210) 212-8622 for more information.