Getting Rid Of Panic Attacks And Severe Anxiety Among CKD Patients On Dialysis

playing music.jpg

A viewer that has Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) and conducts Hemodialysis (HD) wrote, "I started dialysis over 2 years ago and still suffer severe anxiety and  panic attacks before I go on. Is this a common issue and what can I do to control them or get them to pass?" Yes, many people with CKD that conduct home or in-center HD suffer severe panic and anxiety. In some cases these side effects are even worse than renal failure itself. 

Recommended Reading: End Stage Renal Disease Patients Can Correct Common Feelings Of Anxiety During Dialysis Treatments

While some find that there is an actual chemical change in your body when having to conduct dialysis which can be corrected with medication such as antidepressants, there are other ways to manage your anxiety as well. However, you should be in close communication with your Nephrologists and be open and honest about your fears and concerns regarding your dialysis treatment.

Recommended Reading: Is the Cholesterol Medication Prescribed to CKD Patients Directly Responsible For Depression?

Some suggest that panic attacks and anxiety are the worst when you first start dialysis and subside as you become use to having "large needles placed in your arm." Yet, this is not always the case. Many people receiving dialysis suffer with these challenges throughout the entire time they have to conduct the treatment, and it can greatly reduce their quality of life. What is worse is that there have been cases of patients ending-up in the hospital due to these challenges or stopping dialysis all together.

Recommended Reading: The Kidney Transplant Side Effect That No One Tells Chronic Kidney Disease Patients About

Some medicines that you should discuss with your doctor that may reduce your stress and anxiety are Valium, Xanax and Lorazepam (Ativan). If you are suffering panic attacks during your treatment, some have found that Benadryl administered through an IV helps to keep them calm and able to sleep while on dialysis. In fact, a patient has mentioned that "I take Xanax and then receive the IV Benadryl while on the machine. It helps a lot!" While any combination of medicinal solutions must be discussed with your Nephrologists, these options should provide you with a path forward. 

Recommended Reading: The Results Are In: The Truth About The New CKD Bundling Program And How It Affects Patients

Non-medicinal solutions include listening to music that makes you calm when your feel anxious or panicked. Also, exercise can help alleviate fears and clear your mind, while taking deep breaths can also be very calming. 

Recommended Reading: Music can be used to Combat Stress of Chronic Kidney Disease

Although, panic, anxiety and depression from dialysis is commonly waived-off as a simple side effect, here at we understand just how much it can impact a patient's life. Visit us daily for more news and information related to CKD including how to get a transplant sooner. Also, Follow us on Twitter @kidneybuzz and "Like" our Facebook Fan Page. And do not forget to tell a friend about the great free information they can get every day at

Note: Do not forget to order your No BP/No Stick Medical Alert Bracelet  and your FREE Impact Meal Recipe Book!  

Like Us on our Facebook Page for more Daily News and Information about life with CKD and ESRD: 

Most Popular Stories:

Six Common Mistakes That Many CKD Patients Make Which Could Cost Them Their Kidney Transplant
Overcoming Five Of The Most Deadly Dangers Of Dialysis For Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Things Chronic Kidney Disease Patients Aren't Doing Maybe Killing Chances To Prolong Their Life-Line


Ross, Rob, LSW. "Anxiety and Dialysis." Http:// DaVita.

Fanning, Julie. "Don't Panic - Starting Hemodialysis." Http:// SparkNET.