Kidney School™—a program of Medical Education Institute, Inc.

Module 10—Getting Adequate Dialysis

More time with home hemodialysis

More dialysis time is one of the biggest pluses of home HD. Because you can schedule treatments at your own convenience, you can run longer if you need to.

Daily home HD and nocturnal home HD also offer many more hours of treatment in a week. Slower forms of dialysis, like nocturnal home HD, allow more time for wastes and water to move into the blood, where they can be removed. Nocturnal home HD is done for 8 hours at a time, three to six nights per week. This means getting 24 to 48 hours of dialysis instead of just 12—without taking time out of your day.

Patients who use these treatments say they feel much better than they did on standard in-center HD:

I am on dialysis 6 nights a week at home. I have learned to put myself on and have a catheter. I dialyze every night except Saturday (date night, I guess). The sessions are 8 hours long. I used to be on 4 1/2 hours, 3 days a week. I used to dialyze at a blood flow rate of 400. I now dialyze at 250 to 270. My meds have been cut down considerably. I used to use 12 phosphate binders (PhosLo® and Renagel®) after every meal and my phosphorus was always high. My phosphorus is now 3.5 to 4.0 with NO BINDERS! I am even on a medication to raise my blood pressure. The advantage over in-center treatment is, in short: getting your life back. Not really any disadvantages. You feel in control of your treatment and yourself. –Nocturnal home HD patient

I'm tickled pink with daily HHD. My son [50 yrs. old] took the training with me. He learned how to put in my needles and we are working on me forming Buttonholes so I can cannulate myself. The set up and running the machine is a snap. All supplies are delivered to the house, so no traveling to the center. Our time is our own, so we can dialyze first thing in the morning and the rest of the day is ours. I have to say, right here and now, that I feel better now than I have since going on dialysis. –Daily home HD patient

Page 8 of 23 | Further reading