Needs, preparations and common risks associated with dialysis patients

Needs of Dialysis Patients:

The quality of life of a dialysis patient is dependent on the quality of dialysis which inturn is dependent on the quality of water used for dialysis. It is essential that the water used for dialysis meets the minimum standard to be met. It is ensured by doing chemical and microbiological analysis of water at periodic intervals (1-3 monthly) and taking corrective actions accordingly. It is essential that a dialysis patient gets atleast 12 hours of good quality dialysis per week to ensure a healthy life on dialysis. A dialysis patient needs a good diet rich in proteins (50-60grams per day) to stay healthy on dialysis. A dialysis patient might need some other supplements too including iron, vitamins and hormones to maintain hemoglobin and bone health which shall be decided by the treating nephrologist.

Preparations for Dialysis Patients:

Both the dialysis patient and the unit need to be prepared to ensure a safe and seamless dialysis. A patient should have a well-functioning AV fistula or a graft to do proper dialysis. The unit should maintain appropriate water standards. A dialysis unit should be prepared to deal with common issues which might happen during dialysis like high or low blood pressures, low blood sugars, cramps, allergic reaction to dialyzers etc.

Common risks associated with dialysis patients:

Dialysis patients need to visit hospitals/dialysis clinics thrice a week regularly and their blood is taken out and circulated in large amounts through dialysis machines and in the process is exposed to large quantities of water. These put the dialysis patients at a risk of certain complications. They can contract infections during handling of blood. There can be blood loss and anemia. In the present day pandemic, the risk of contracting COVID from the hospital can’t be completely negated.

Author is a Nephrologist of Apollo Dialysis Clinics. Currently Apollo Dialysis Clinics operates 70+ clinics at 60+ locations in Delhi-NCR (Gurgaon), Telengana, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The company has also recently launched Home Dialysis Services in Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi, Guwahati.

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