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Does Dialysis Hurt

2013-06-24 16:38

Q:

Does dialysis hurt? How do you feel when you are on dialysis? I am a patient of kidney failure and was told by my doctor that I have to undergo dialysis. That scares me.

 

A:

Hi, thanks for your message and I am so sorry to hear you are going to undergo dialysis. Dialysis helps to remove toxins in blood and lower risk for severe complications like heart failure, so it is must if your kidneys have lost almost all the function.

Before dialysis, a surgery is needed to make a fistula which is an abnormal connection or passageway between two epithelium-lined organs or vessels that normally do not connect. If you can take good care of your fistula, you will feel no pain during dialysis process. However, if you unfortunately get infection in your fistula, it will looks red and you may feel pain during dialysis process.

Besides, dialysis is life-saving, but torturous seeing from another angle as it can cause lots of discomforts. Pain-related side effects caused by dialysis include:

1. Headache: It usually occurs due to rapid fluctuation of blood pressure, disturbance of fluid and electrolyte. Also, sometimes dialysis may experience headache when their dialysis fluid is changed.

2. Leg pain: dialysis usually suffer from leg pain due to severe leg cramp which is another side effect of dialysis.

3. Abdomen pain: For kidney failure patients with peritoneal dialysis, they are running high risk for peritonitis which may cause pain feeling in abdomen.

Dialysis itself is not pain, but torturous due to its complications. Aside from the above several side effects, dialysis also causes infection, tiredness, itching skin, nausea and low blood pressure and so on. Therefore, for people who are going to undergo dialysis, learning how to manage these problems in advance is very essential.

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