"I'm struggling with my personal life lately," a viewer wrote KidneyBuzz.com. He continued, "Why am I so tired after every Dialysis Treatment? I know it is something which most Chronic Kidney Disease patients on Dialysis deal with, but what causes the extreme fatigue? Any help you can provide me with would be very much appreciated."
Fatigue is when individuals feel tired and exhausted all of the time which is a debilitating side effect frequently experienced by many who suffer with Chronic Kidney Disease, especially those on Dialysis. Typically, fatigue is an important and often under-recognized symptom in the Chronic Kidney Disease Community. In fact, fatigue has such a negative effect on Chronic Kidney Disease patients' lives that a study published in the American Journal of Kidney Disease found that reducing fatigue to help improve a patient's quality of life was considered more important than survival by some patients.
Both Hemodialysis and Peritoneal Dialysis cause fatigue, and ranges from 30% to 80% depending on the Dialysis Modality (Treatment Type). This side effect is thought to be caused by a combination of the loss of normal Kidney Function, effects that Dialysis can have on the body, dietary restrictions associated with Dialysis, and overall stress and anxiety that many people with Kidney Failure experience.
Although Erythropoietin Stimulating Agents (ESAs) such as EPO have been shown to mitigate fatigue, recent studies regarding dangers associated with ESA dosing in Chronic Kidney Disease patients suggests that ESA therapy may not serve as the most effective option to improve fatigue in those with Chronic Kidney Disease as well as patients who conduct Dialysis.
Additional steps which patients may immediately take to improve their overall health outcomes and limit feelings of excessive fatigue include, talking to your Dietitians to see if their diet can be adjusted to help increase energy levels. Research has also shown that a regular low-to-moderate aerobic exercise plan which is developed with your Healthcare Teams can improve fatigue. For instance, walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, Tai chi, and Qigong (an ancient Chinese health care system that integrates physical postures, breathing techniques and focused intention) are all good choices for most Chronic Kidney Disease patients.
Recommended Reading: Exercises Tailored for Chronic Kidney Disease on Dialysis
If you find that you are fatigued after starting a fitness program and regular exercise is excessively difficult, then talk to your Nephrologists or Healthcare Teams who will be able to advise you about the type of exercise which is more suitable for your needs. You should know that many people who are on Dialysis specifically have noted that they feel "out of breath" when beginning a new exercise regimen. However, they found that by persevering, the exercise became easier with time.
Do you suffer Chronic Fatigue, and what have you done to minimize its effects on your quality of life? Click here to Like us on the KidneyBuzz.com Facebook Fan Page and join the lively discussion with over 17,700 other Friends. Also, for the latest Breaking News and Information about how those with Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis and Diabetes can better manage their lives, visit KidneyBuzz.com every day.
Most Popular Stories:
Jhamb, Manisha, Steven D. Weisbord, Jennifer L. Steel, and Mark Unruh. "Fatigue in Patients Receiving Maintenance Dialysis: A Review of Definitions, Measures, and Contributing Factors." American Journal of Kidney Diseases : The Official Journal of the National Kidney Foundation. U.S. National Library of Medicine.
"Dialysis - Side Effects ."Dialysishttp://www.nhs.uk/conditions/dialysis/pages/side-effects.aspx. National Health Services.
"Hemodialysis Fatigue: Just." Http://journal.frontiersin.org/. Frontiers.
"What Is Chronic Kidney Failure? What Causes Chronic Kidney Disease?"Http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/. Medical News Today.