Most people living with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are treated with dialysis – either at home or at a clinic. Dialysis is a process involving the removal of waste and extra fluid from your blood that your kidneys are no longer able to filter out. Dialysis filters your blood through a membrane, which mimics a healthy kidney. This membrane can either be synthetic, such as a dialyzer filter, or it can be naturally existing, such as the peritoneal membrane. During dialysis treatment, the small waste products in your blood flow through this membrane and into a fluid called dialysate, making your blood clean.
Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) at Home
Peritoneal dialysis (PD) cleans your blood while dialysis solution is in the peritoneal cavity, using the lining of your abdomen (peritoneal membrane) as a filter. Because of this, it can be performed at home, at work, or while traveling, either by yourself or with the support of a caregiver. You can perform peritoneal dialysis (PD) during the day or while you sleep, giving you the flexibility to plan your dialysis treatments around your daily schedule. Peritoneal dialysis (PD) is a treatment typically performed every day.
Home Hemodialysis (Home HD)
Hemodialysis (HD) filters your blood using a machine and a synthetic membrane called a dialyzer. Like peritoneal dialysis (PD), it can be performed in your own home, either during the day or while you sleep typically with the support of a caregiver. The ability to treat without a clinician’s assistance may allow you to plan your treatment schedule around work, school, or other activities. Home hemodialysis (Home HD) is a treatment typically performed 3-6 times per week.
In-Center Hemodialysis (In-Center HD)
Hemodialysis (HD) can also be performed in a hospital or dialysis clinic under the supervision of your clinician. In-center hemodialysis (In-Center HD) typically requires that you visit the hospital or clinic 3 times a week for treatments that last between 3 and 5 hours each time. Your treatment will be closely supervised, and you will be able to ask questions face-to-face. Additionally, you will be around others who are receiving a similar treatment.
Comparing Dialysis Treatment Options
It is important to remember that not every type of dialysis treatment will be suitable to your physical, clinical, emotional and lifestyle needs. There are different benefits and considerations for each therapy. You should be prepared to discuss these with your clinician in order to ensure you are choosing the therapy that is right for you.Compare treatments
Other Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) Treatment Options
There are treatment options other than dialysis that you may consider. If you meet the necessary requirements, you may consider a kidney transplant. For some, conservative care without dialysis treatment may be a suitable option.
Live Well on Dialysis
No matter what type of treatment you choose, prioritizing your physical and emotional well-being throughout your treatment is essential for living well with chronic kidney disease (CKD). The next step in your journey is to discover how you can embrace a healthy lifestyle and live your life the way you want to live it.