There are 2 kinds of home dialysis modalities:
1. Home hemodialysis
2. Home peritoneal dialysis.
Home dialysis has several benefits when compared to in-center hemodialysis. In both choices of home dialysis, patients receive more frequent dialysis session than in-center hemodialysis. As such, they have better blood pressure control. This may reduce stress on the heart and blood vessels.
Patients on home dialysis and nocturnal dialysis are able to eat more and use fewer medications. In addition, patients can do more of their daily activities and continue working.
If you are on home dialysis and planning to travel, you need to talk to your dialysis nurses. They are usually available 24 hours – 7 days of the week. They will arrange for you for either hemodialysis or continuing peritoneal dialysis at your destination.
Patients who do home dialysis are more involved in their care, and as such, are more proactive in living healthy and getting better. On the other hand, in-center hemodialysis patients have better support group as they meet with nursing staff and case managers on regular basis.
When making a decision about the type of treatment, you should take into consideration that home dialysis is usually a daily process, similar to the working of the kidney and may be more gentle with fluid removal from the body. Both home peritoneal dialysis and home hemodialysis are excellent choices in treatment on end stage renal disease patients. They are both as effective form of dialysis as in-center hemodialysis.
There are some people for whom home dialysis may not be appropriate. Home dialysis requires independent patients with good family and social support that can help the patient in this process. Home dialysis is not for everyone. People must receive training and be able to perform correctly each of the steps of the treatment. A trained helper may also be used.