Dialysis is a form of medical treatment which removes the body’s waste products and fluids from people whose kidneys have failed. The dialysis team at Quincy Medical Group is your support system for initial training, education for you and your family, daily dialysis and monthly clinics. We are available to you 24/7, providing clinical, social, and financial decision support during your dialysis journey.
What does dialysis do?
Like healthy kidneys, dialysis keeps your body in balance. Dialysis does the following:
- removes waste, salt and extra water to prevent them from building up in the body
- keeps a safe level of certain chemicals in your blood, such as potassium, sodium, and bicarbonate
- helps to control blood pressure
Peritoneal Dialysis – In this type of dialysis, your blood is cleaned inside your body. A catheter is placed into your abdomen (belly) to access the peritoneum (the sac that lines the abdominal cavity). During the treatment, your peritoneum is slowly filled with dialysate through the catheter. Extra fluid and waste products are drawn out of your blood and into the dialysate. There are two major kinds of peritoneal dialysis: Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD) and Continuous Cycling Peritoneal Dialysis (CCPD).
- Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD) is done without machines. You do this yourself, usually four or five times a day, at home and/or at work. You put a bag of dialysate into your peritoneum, through the catheter. The dialysate stays there for about four hours before it is drained back into the bag and thrown away. While the dialysate is in your peritoneal cavity, you can go about your usual activities at work, at school or at home.
- Continuous Cycling Peritoneal Dialysis (CCPD) usually is done at home using a special machine called a cycler. This is similar to CAPD except that a number of cycles (exchanges) occur. Each cycle usually lasts 1-1/2 hours and exchanges are done throughout the night while you sleep.
Home Hemodialysis – This type of dialysis uses an artificial filter on a machine to remove fluids and waste products from the bloodstream.
- Conventional home hemodialysis is done several times a week for three to four hours or longer each time. You and your care partner are trained to do dialysis safely and to handle any problems that may come up. Training may take from several weeks to a few months.
- Short daily home hemodialysis usually lasts about two hours each. You and your care partner are trained over several weeks. Because you are doing dialysis more often, less fluid generally needs to be removed each time. This reduces symptoms like headaches, nausea, cramping and feeling “washed out” after treatment.
- Nocturnal home hemodialysis is done at night while you sleep. Treatments usually last about six to eight hours. Nocturnal home hemodialysis is not for everyone; you and your home will be evaluated before you are trained on this type of dialysis. You and your care partner are trained over several weeks. More hours of dialysis each week can result in more waste removal.
As you choose which form of dialysis is best for you, Quincy Medical Group’s team of qualified and experienced professionals will be with you every step of the way.