Kidney Dialysis and How it Works

When you have loss kidney function something need to be done to replace the cleansing of the blood from pollutants and to help remove fluid and that replacement is called "dialysis.

At first glance, this life saving dialysis machine looks like something from Star Wars, all the tubes and meters and it kind of looks like R2D2 except it's not walking around just sitting there beside you. The good news is your "little buddy" is your life saver because it is going to cleanse your body for you and get rid of what your body can not do on it own anymore.

Many people have a shunt in their arm where they hook up the dialysis machine and on one side of the machine the dialysate (the fluid they use) is going to flow and on the other side your blood is going to flow and when the blood is cleaned it returns to you. The dialysate also has minerals in it that are loss during dialysis, like calcium and potassium. More than likely they will also put your on a prescription for these same minerals. This type dialysis is called. "hemodialysis" and is usually done 3 times a week for 3 or 4 hours.

Another form of dialysis is called, "Peritoneal dialysis". In this type dialysis the dialysate is of glucose and minerals and is run through your stomach area. The dialysate is then left to clean your body of waste and pollutants and then drained and thrown away. The nice part of this treatment is that it is done at home and can even be done when your traveling. This treatment does not do quite as good as hemodialysis but because it is done more often during the day the methods of cleansing your body becomes about the same.

I can not stress this enough, on your days of dialysis, you are going to be tired and it's ok! Your body has just walked through in 3-4 hours what it normally takes to do in 48 hours. It's like running a mile in 4 minutes and you're going to be tired. The good news is the days you do not have dialysis, usually, you will gain some energy back and feel less exhausted. Do not try to do too much on your days that you have dialysis, it will only make you more tired than you already are and there is always tomorrow when you feel better to do what you need to do.