When Need Dialysis and Risks

ImageYou need dialysis when you develop end stage kidney failure –usually by the time you lose about 85 to 90 percent of your kidney function and have a GFR of <15.

Is dialysis uncomfortable?

You may have some discomfort when the needles are put into your fistula or graft, but most patients have no other problems. The dialysis treatment itself is painless. However, some patients may have a drop in their blood pressure. If this happens, you may feel sick to your stomach, vomit, have a headache or cramps. With frequent treatments, those problems usually go away.

Risks of dialysis

Low blood pressure (hypotension).

Muscle cramps.

Itching.

Sleep problems.

Anemia.

Bone diseases.

High blood pressure (hypertension).

Fluid overload.

Inflammation of the membrane surrounding the heart (pericarditis).

High potassium levels (hyperkalemia).

Access site complications.

Amyloidosis.

Depression.

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