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Saturday, May 6, 2017

Chronic Fluid Overload Can Shorten Life for Hemodialysis Patients

Kidney patients on hemodialysis are constantly nagged to watch their fluids. We are fortunate in that my hubby has some residual function left in his kidneys, and he still urinates.  This allows him to have more fluid than some patients - who no longer urinate at all.  He also stays as physically active as possible, taking a daily walk, and this seems to also help substantially with keeping excess fluids off.

Another problem that we had, especially when we first switched back to hemodialysis, was getting the dialysis clinic to take him all the way down to his dry weight. This is one reason you should monitor closely what your clinic is doing as far as your treatments.  Don't blindly trust them to do the treatment correctly. We have time after time had to point out to the clinic personnel mistakes made in my husband's treatment, from cutting his time short, to leaving far too much fluid on him. 

If you are a hemodialysis patient, you probably already know too well the miseries of having a fluid overload.  But now there is a new study that makes it clear that a fluid overload is not simply miserable - if it is chronic it can literally shorten your life. They concluded persistent fluid overload raised your risk of early death roughly as much as having coronary artery disease or being twelve years older.  You can read more about the study by clicking here. 

So, I know you get nagged about this all the time - but really, it is so important to keep your fluid overload at a minimum. There are a lot of people who love you and want you to feel well and to hang around with them for many more years of love and happiness.

I am still a big advocate for peritoneal dialysis.  More frequent dialysis, and more control over your own treatment can be a big help in avoiding fluid overload. It isn't perfect for everyone - but it is a viable alternative to in-clinic hemodialysis or home hemodialysis. And, yes, I did write a book about our experience with home peritoneal dialysis that you can purchase by clicking here. 

Blessedbe

Summer Foovay

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