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Who needs dialysis?

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if your kidney disease becomes very severe and crosses a point where there’s not enough function to maintain the body, then you likely need either a transplant or dialysis.

Typically you either start dialysis when you have symptoms or lab tests show toxic levels of waste in your blood. Symptoms of kidney failure include nausea, fatigue, swelling, and throwing up. 

When you should start dialysis depends on your age, energy level, overall health, lab test results, and how willing you are to commit to a treatment plan. Although it can make you feel better and live longer, it involves a lot of your time.

Your doctor will let you know when you should start treatment. They’ll also explain which type might work best for you.

SOURCES:

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “Your Kidneys and How They Work,” “Dialysis,” “Choosing Not to Treat With Dialysis or Transplant,” “Treatment Methods for Kidney Failure: Hemodialysis.”

National Kidney Foundation: “Dialysis,” “Hemodialysis,” “Coping With the Top 5 Side Effects of Dialysis,” Filtering Dialysis Myths From Facts,” “Dialysis: Deciding to Stop.”

Texas Heart Institute: “Vascular Access for Hemodialysis.”

Mayo Clinic: “Hemodialysis,” “Peritoneal Dialysis.”

University of Wisconsin Health: “Kidney Failure: When Should I Start Dialysis?”

American Kidney Fund: “Peritoneal Dialysis (PD).”

American Journal of Kidney Disease: “Fatigue in Patients Receiving Maintenance Dialysis: A Review of Definitions, Measures and Contributing Factors.”

CDC: “Dialysis Safety: Patient Overview.”

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on December 21, 2018

SOURCES:

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “Your Kidneys and How They Work,” “Dialysis,” “Choosing Not to Treat With Dialysis or Transplant,” “Treatment Methods for Kidney Failure: Hemodialysis.”

National Kidney Foundation: “Dialysis,” “Hemodialysis,” “Coping With the Top 5 Side Effects of Dialysis,” Filtering Dialysis Myths From Facts,” “Dialysis: Deciding to Stop.”

Texas Heart Institute: “Vascular Access for Hemodialysis.”

Mayo Clinic: “Hemodialysis,” “Peritoneal Dialysis.”

University of Wisconsin Health: “Kidney Failure: When Should I Start Dialysis?”

American Kidney Fund: “Peritoneal Dialysis (PD).”

American Journal of Kidney Disease: “Fatigue in Patients Receiving Maintenance Dialysis: A Review of Definitions, Measures and Contributing Factors.”

CDC: “Dialysis Safety: Patient Overview.”

Reviewed by Minesh Khatri on December 21, 2018

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