Do you know that dialysis patients suffer from several complications? Nephrologist S. Venkatesh Rajkumar will tell you about risks linked to it.
Dialysis patients urine output: Dialysis is a treatment that purifies and filters the blood using a machine which helps to keep your electrolytes and fluids in balance when the kidneys don’t function. The kidneys filter your blood by removing excess fluid and waste from your body. This waste is then sent to the bladder to be eliminated when you urinate. When the kidneys aren’t performing any functions due to disease or injury, dialysis can help to keep the body running. When the kidneys are functioning correctly, they prevent extra water waste and other impurities from accumulating in your body. They even regulate the levels of chemical elements in the blood and help in controlling blood pressure. These elements may include sodium and potassium. Not only this, kidneys even activate a form of vitamin D that improves the absorption of calcium.
What are the needs of dialysis patients? Explains Nephrologist S. Venkatesh Rajkumar
The quality of life of a dialysis patient is dependent on the quality of dialysis, which in turn is dependent on the quality of water used for dialysis. The water used for dialysis must meet the minimum standard to be completed. It is ensured by doing chemical and microbiological analysis of water at periodic intervals (1-3 monthly) and taking corrective actions accordingly.
- A dialysis patient must get at least 12 hours of adequate quality dialysis per week to ensure a healthy life on dialysis.
- A dialysis patient needs a good diet rich in proteins (50-60grams per day) to stay healthy on dialysis.
- A dialysis patient might need some other supplements too including iron, vitamins and hormones to maintain haemoglobin and bone health which shall be decided by the treating nephrologist.
Peritoneal dialysis patient preparation
Both the dialysis patient and the unit need to be prepared to ensure safe and seamless dialysis. A patient should have a well-functioning AV fistula or a graft to do proper dialysis. The unit should maintain appropriate water standards. A dialysis unit should be prepared to deal with common issues which might happen during dialysis like high or low blood pressures, low blood sugars, cramps, allergic reaction to dialyzers etc.
Common risks associated with dialysis patients
Dialysis patients need to visit hospitals/dialysis clinics thrice a week regularly, and their blood is taken out and circulated in large amounts through dialysis machines and in the process is exposed to large quantities of water. These put the dialysis patients at risk of certain complications. They can contract infections during handling of blood. There can be blood loss and anaemia. In the present day pandemic, the risk of contracting COVID from the hospital can’t be completely negated.
S. Venkatesh Rajkumar, Consultant Nephrologist, Apollo Dialysis Clinics, Chennai states that "kidney failure does not happen overnight. One can sometimes come across the symptoms in the early stage of kidney diseases. Though when the symptoms are shown late, thus kidney failure is the result. It happens when more than 85% of the functioning of the kidney doesn’t work, or a person is having either diabetes or high blood pressure. As your kidneys failed, the level of creatinine in your blood rose."
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