Indeed our body is naturally designed to be able to do dialysis automatically. But if needed, the process of dialysis with the help of medical devices can be done. Dialysis or hemodialysis will be needed when the kidneys are no longer functioning properly.
Nowadays dialysis is identical to the medical process to remove excess impurities and water in the blood. In a natural process, the kidneys are the organs responsible for doing this.
Why does it require dialysis?
Blood screening is the job of the kidneys. But in patients with chronic kidney disease or kidney failure, kidney function can not be done optimally.
When the kidneys fail to cleanse, there is accumulation of waste, toxins, and fluid in the blood. This condition risks endangering overall body health. If kidney function is lost as much as 85-90 percent, it is required to do dialysis in order to avoid a variety of fatal complications.
Of course it takes an assessment from a doctor and a series of medical tests to determine whether or not someone needs to have dialysis. There are several things that become benchmarks, namely levels of creatinine and urea in the blood, kidney speed of filtering blood, the body’s ability to cope with excess water, and certain complaints that refer to heart, breathing, stomach, or numbness disorders in the legs.
In the process of dialysis, there are two methods that can be chosen by the patient, namely hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis.
This type of dialysis is the most widely known. Hemodialysis uses a special machine to filter blood to replace damaged kidneys. In this dialysis process, medical personnel will usually insert a needle in a vein to connect the blood flow from the body to the dialysis machine. After that, dirty blood will be filtered in a blood washing machine, and after filtering, clean blood will be flowed back into the body.
Hemodialysis dialysis usually takes about four hours per session. Within a week there are 3 sessions that must be undertaken and can only be done in dialysis clinics or hospitals. Side effects that usually arise due to hemodialysis are itchy skin and cramps in the muscles.
This CAPD dialysis method uses the peritoneum (membrane in the abdominal cavity) as a filter. Peritoneum has thousands of small blood vessels that can function like a kidney.
A small incision is made near the navel for the entrance of a special tube or catheter. This catheter will be left in the abdominal cavity permanently. Its function is to enter dialysate fluid, which is a liquid containing high sugar to attract waste substances and excess fluid from surrounding blood vessels, into the abdominal cavity. After finishing, the dialysate liquid containing the remaining substances is channeled into a special bag which is finally disposed of. Then it is replaced with sterile fresh liquid.
The advantage of dialysis process with this method is that it can be done at home, anytime, and is usually done while the patient is sleeping. However, this method must be done four times each day and takes about 30 minutes. Side effects can be peritonitis (peritoneal infection that surrounds the abdominal cavity), the stomach feels full when dialysis takes place, weight gain because dialysate fluid contains high sugar levels, or the appearance of hernias due to heavy fluid in the abdominal cavity.
Will the process of dialysis interfere with the patient’s activities?
Although dialysis does not cause patients who do so to feel pain or discomfort, some of them may experience headaches, nausea, vomiting, cramps, drop in blood pressure, fatigue, and dry, itchy skin.
Although the things above may be felt, in fact dialysis does not interfere with patient activity. Many patients who do dialysis, but still have a good quality of life. They can still work or continue school. Dialysis is also not an obstacle to do various activities, such as swimming, exercising, driving, or even on vacation, if there are no complaints after the dialysis process.
The process of dialysis is a form of help against kidney organ damage. In patients with kidney failure, dialysis can also help control blood pressure, and regulate mineral and electrolyte levels in the body.
Because the importance of kidney function for life, then you need to maintain it by living a healthy lifestyle and routinely carry out kidney function checks to monitor kidney conditions. If there are complaints related to kidney problems, immediately consult a doctor.