Chronic Kidney Failure occurs when a disease or disorder damages the kidneys so that they no longer adequately remove fluids and wastes from the body or maintain proper levels of kidney-regulated chemicals in the bloodstream. Chronic Kidney Failure affects over 250,000 Americans annually. The rate for CKD is three times higher in African Americans than Caucasians.
Some people do not know they are at risk. Kidney Failure it commonly caused by Diabetes, High Blood Pressure inflammation of glomeruli, which is a filtering unit for the kidney or Polycystic which is when cysts are formed on the kidneys. When you enter end stage kidney failure, you need dialysis because you have lost eighty-five to ninety percent of your kidney function.
Dialysis patients can still live an active and social lifestyle. Dialysis keeps your body in balance by removing waste, salt, and extra water. It also helps control blood pressure, keeping a safe level of chemicals in the blood, such as potassium, sodium, and bicarbonate. There are two different types of dialysis treatment options hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Hemodialysis which is what I do, an artificial kidney called hemodialyzer is used to remove waste and fluid.The treatment involves circulating the patient’s blood outside of the body through a dialysis circuit.
The patient’s blood leaves and enters the body through two needles inserted into the patient’s vein called an access site. Once the patient’s blood is inside the dialyzer, excess fluids and toxins are pulled out of the bloodstream. Specially trained nurses and dialysis technicians supervise and monitor patients during treatment. Dialysis does some of the work of healthy kidneys, but it does not cure your kidney disease. You will need to have dialysis treatments for your whole life unless you are able to get a kidney transplant. Another type of dialysis is called Peritoneal. A soft plastic tube (catheter) is placed in your belly by surgery.
A sterile cleansing fluid is put into your belly through this catheter. After the filtering process is finished, the fluid leaves your body through the catheter. In peritoneal dialysis, the inside lining of your own belly acts as a natural filter. Wastes are taken out by means of a cleansing fluid called dialysate, which is washed in and out of your belly in cycles. Hemodialysis which is what I do, have been done since the mid 1940’s.
Dialysis, as a regular treatment, was begun in 1960 and is now a standard treatment all around the world. It requires me to go to a facility/clinic three times a week for three hours and forty-five minutes. Each ESRD case is different; your time depends on height, weight, fluid gain and how well your kidney work. The dialysis unit is filled technicians and nurses to assist you. Dialysis treatment itself does not hurt aside from the needles being stuck in your arm.
Afterwards many time dialysis I and others have been known to feel very weak, nausea, headaches and leg cramps. In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle on dialysis, it is important to avoid foods like dairy, high salty and sugary foods. Although dialysis is an awful way to spend your days and hours, it allows me to study and journal. I and others refuse to let dialysis stop us from living an active life. I exercise when I have energy and even travel. This year I went to the Bahamas on a carnival cruise.
This meant a lot to me because I never thought I would get to see the crisp blue water because of dialysis. Kaylee Henriquez like myself refuse to let dialysis hold her back from reaching goals. Kaylee gave birth to Mateo although women on dialysis are not advised to get pregnant.
Over 90 percent of women of childbearing age on dialysis cannot get pregnant because having kidney disease can decrease the ability to produce healthy eggs that can be fertilized. While it is rare, women on dialysis have become pregnant. Of these pregnancies, about 20 percent will end in miscarriage.A full-term pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks; however, about 80 percent of dialysis pregnancies will only go about 32 weeks, resulting in a premature birth. Pregnancy is generally not recommended for dialysis patients because it is considered a high-risk pregnancy. Healthy kidneys work all day every day, yet in-center hemodialysis is only about 12 hours per week and replaces only a portion of kidney function. The body of someone on dialysis has a higher level of waste products than a body with good kidney function. Having extra wastes in the body makes it harder for the baby to develop as it should.
During pregnancy, healthy kidneys must work overtime to keep the blood clean because the baby releases wastes into the mother’s blood stream, and she also has an increased amount of blood in her body. So, for women on dialysis whose kidneys don’t work, pregnancy is even harder on the body, and more frequent dialysis is recommended to keep the blood as clean as possible.Haylee increased dialysis from three days to six days a week. Haylee was determined to be a mom at whatever cost she sought the help of North Shore doctors. In conclusion Dialysis is very difficult at first.
I don’t think you ever get over it, you accept that this is a part of your life for however long it has to be. Kidney disease like others can be a burden on the patient, family, friends and spouse. It is important to gain as much knowledge as you can about prevention of diseases and your family history. My father before he died June 2013 was a dialysis patient, my mother and grandmother has high blood pressure as well.