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Dialysis

How to choose a type of dialysis

Peritoneal dialysis (PD) may be a choice for you if:

  • You don’t have certain stomach diseases, such as Crohn’s disease
  • You don’t have scars on your stomach that get in the way of treatment
  • You want to do your own treatment at home
  • You can do treatment every day
  • You have space to store supplies at your home

Hemodialysis in a dialysis center may be a choice for you if:

  • You live close enough to a center to get there 3 times each week
  • You’d rather have trained professionals handle your treatment than do it yourself
  • You are ok with needle sticks

Hemodialysis at home may be a choice for you if:

  • You want to do your own treatment at home
  • You can do treatment most days of the week
  • A family member is willing to be trained to help you
  • You have space to store a machine and supplies at your home
  • You are ok with needle sticks

Pros of dialysis

Dialysis can filter waste out of your body to keep you alive.

Cons for each type of dialysis

The longer you stay on dialysis, the more likely you are to get heart disease or an infection. These can be deadly. Patients who get a transplant usually live longer and more comfortably than people who stay on dialysis.

Peritoneal Dialysis (PD)

Possible side effects
  • Infection in your belly
  • Hernias caused by pressure from the dialysis solution
  • Not eating enough because the solution might make you feel full
  • Bloating
  • Weight gain
  • Higher blood sugars if you’re diabetic
Foods you eat

You may have to make some changes in what you eat, but less than with hemodialysis

Travel

No limit on travel

Minor Surgery

To insert a tube in your stomach

Hemodialysis

Possible side effects
  • Muscle cramps
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Joint pain and stiffness
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Blood infection
  • More deaths in the 1st year of treatment compared to peritoneal dialysis
Foods you eat

You have to eat less food and less:

  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Potassium
  • Phosphorous
Travel

Limited because you’ll be at a dialysis center 3-4 days each week

Minor Surgery

To make it easier to get to your blood

Leaders in transplant excellence

UNOS works with leading educational partners to provide accurate, trustworthy health information. Our educational partners include:

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Duke University School of Medicine
Emory University
Johns Hopkins University
Mount Sinai Hospital
Northwestern University
Temple University
University of California, Los Angeles

Special thanks to our corporate sponsor for supporting excellence in transplant education:
Sanofi

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