Controversial Announcement Favoring Shorter In Center Dialysis Treatment Every Day For CKD Patients



For most Chronic Kidney Disease patients conducting Dialysis, their goal as it relates to treatment is to attend Dialysis, receive their necessary treatments, and go home. The less time they are in the Dialysis Center, the better. However, a new study advocates for Dialysis seven days a week per patient for a shorter time-frame in order to improve health outcomes. 

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Presented at the American Society of Nephrology, Researchers found that seven-day Dialysis Treatment availability was better for the patient schedule, compliance, hospitalization, and even survival/longevity. The decade-long study found that patients who received Dialysis seven-times a week for two-hours per treatment missed fewer treatments and experienced less hospitalization. 

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The study highlighted the fact that with the current Monday through Saturday schedule, there is a 72-hour interval that patients do not receive treatment. This leads to a build-up of fluid and a larger number of patients having to rely on the Emergency Room because Dialysis Centers are typically closed on Sunday and full on patients' Non-Dialysis days.

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Prior studies have shown that hospital admission on the weekend is associated with poorer patient outcomes, suggested the authors. Similarly Dialysis patients also, unfortunately, expreience higher rates of mortality (death) over the weekends. 

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Lead Researcher Pedro Pascoal said, “Seven-day Dialysis services may well narrow the gap between weekday and weekend Dialysis mortality, as supported by our consistently low hospitalization and mortality rates." However, many patients may find the idea of daily In Center Dialysis difficult since it would require more time on the machine. The average In Center Dialysis patient remains on the Dialysis Machine for 3.5 hours three times a week, and the total time conducting treatment is 10.5 hours a week. Many patients find that the current regimen takes up a large portion of their days when combined with traveling to and from Dialysis, getting on and off of the machine, and recovery time after treatments. 

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The newly recommended standard would balloon the time patients conduct Dialysis Treatment to 14 hours a week (2 hours per treatment, 7 days a week) which is the equivalent of a 25% increase in time conducting Dialysis. Moreover, getting transportation to and from Dialysis or having to drive back-and-forth from treatments may be difficult for many patients; increasing transportation fees or gas bills. 

Researchers said that “We are excited to be sharing this data with the entire renal care community." What are your thoughts? Would you consider daily Dialysis or would you prefer continuing your current treatment schedule? 

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