Kidney dialysis

Dialysis is referred to as the artificial method of removing waste products and unnecessary from one’s blood. Although this is a process that the kidneys do naturally, when the two kidneys fail to function properly, the waste products are removed by the process called dialysis. People with damaged kidneys have to opt for this procedure to get the waste substances removed from their body. Dialysis is a type of renal replacement therapy, since it, in a way, replaces the kidneys in terms of their functionality. Dialysis is only used when patients have lost their kidneys or have suffered from an acute failure of one or both the kidneys, or when patients suffer from kidney related diseases such as chronic kidney disease when their kidneys can no longer function properly.

The kidney is responsible for producing certain types of chemical substances during excretion. When kidneys fail to function properly, dialysis is used as a replacement for the lost kidneys. However, this does not necessarily mean that the dialysis will function exactly similar to a kidney, rather because of the dialysis treatment certain functions (such as that of removing the waste products from the body) of the kidneys are imitated.

Dialysis is important for a number of reasons. The kidneys together filter about 1500 liters of blood in the body of a healthy person each day. One could not survive had kidneys not been there, because then the unwanted waste substances would have remained inside the body. People with dysfunctional kidneys cannot rid their bodies of this unwanted waste. For them a dialysis becomes a necessity in order to remove the waste from the blood. If the waste were not removed, the waste substances could accumulate in the blood to an extent that could lead a person to coma, and eventually death.

Dialysis does not only remove the waste from the body, but also rids the body of harmful toxins or unwanted drugs from the blood vessels. There are two main types of dialysis that can be performed in people with dysfunctional kidneys. These two types of dialysis are the hemodialysis and the peritoneal dialysis. The type of dialysis that is to be performed on a patient will be determined by the individual’s case. Thus the procedure of artificially removing waste from the body will vary person to person. After extensive analysis only will a doctor be able to confirm the type of dialysis that will suit the person.

In hemodialysis, the person’s blood vessels are connected to an artificial filter outside the body that will filter the blood thus trapping the waste and removing it from the body. The blood after being filtered in the external filter goes into the body. Surgery is required for this type of dialysis. Besides, the process will have to be repeated for about 3 to 4 hours every week. Hemodialysis can be done either at home or in a hospital. The duration of the procedures in every session is dependent on the effectiveness of the veins in transferring blood to the filter.

The peritoneal dialysis, on the other hand, involves the ingestion of a sterile solution that is rich in glucose and minerals through a tube that is connected with the peritoneal cavity. The solution remains inside and absorbs the waste products. Once the waste has been absorbed, it is led out of the tube.

Although peritoneal dialysis is less expensive compared to hemodialysis as it involves cleaning the blood and requires less equipment, doctors often recommend patients to have hemodialysis because it is more effective than the peritoneal dialysis. No matter which type of dialysis is used, the doctor’s recommendation regarding the matter should be of utmost importance. However, the most important thing that one should remember is that, dialysis in itself is a complicated procedure and, therefore, one should always maintain health rules so that such a situation does not arise when a dialysis has to be used.

Last updated on Sep 10th, 2010 and filed under Genitourinary Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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