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Kidney Dialysis
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Question about dialysis treatment

I have a question my father and I are new to dialysis and right now he has a catheter in his chest so he can do dialysis I was wondering how often should they change his patch because they stated if he gets an infections it could kill him instantly. Thank you for your responses

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Hi Foster15 !!! If he has a chest catheter, he should be following up with the Cardiovascular/cardiothoracic surgeon who implanted it regularly. The surgeon will have the best answer on how often to have it checked. And your father is very correct about infection risk. The best way to prevent infection is to KEEP THE AREA AWAY FROM WATER......No Matter WHAT !!! that catheter has a direct line to the chest, which means it's close to the heart, and if water gets in the incision or the catheter itself, the fluid could go to his heart which is FATAL. When my husband had his chest catheter while the fistula was developing, he couldn't take showers. He had to wash up at the sink to control how much water is used and to keep it away from the catheter. I highly suggest making sure your dad does that. Definitely be in regular contact with the surgeon who implanted the catheter if you have any questions as he/she would have the best advice. Will pray things go well and according to God's will for the both of you !!! Its a good idea that you are on here as I am in a caregiving position just as it seems you are, and we need support too !!! Best wishes to the both of you !!!

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Thank you so much for your reply it was very helpful I will be in contact with the surgeon more about this. He had a heart attack which turned in pneumonia then having to be rescuitated the hear surgeon states that right now his heart is too weak for them to even attempt to put the fistula in. Thank you and I will keep your family in my prayers as well.

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It depends on the type of patch used. Our center switched from one that had to be changed every two days to one that gets changed once a week. I agree that it's very important never to get it wet. I had a temporary chest catheter and very carefully sponge bathed around it and was able to shower my lower body. My husband helped wash my hair at the kitchen sink. Get a handheld shower head. Good luck to both of you! Is he going to get a fistula or a graft eventually? That cuts the risk of infection way down, especially the fistula.

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As of right know his heart is too weak and they said they would lose him on the operating table so I have no ideal if they will ever be an option. Is there a different in patches?

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You'll need to check with his dialysis nurses - they're the only ones who can change his patches, although the doctor checks the catheter, too. The nurses are extremely careful and both the patient and nurse are masked whenever they take off a patch. Please ask the nurses and dialysis doctor any questions or concerns you may have - they are your best source of information. Take care!

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The dialysis clinic should be cleaning the area around the catheter and putting on new bandage at every treatment. If you are doing home dialysis, you should do it at that time also.

The best thing is to get rid of the catheter. Make an appointment with a reputable vascular surgeon. Get the vein-mapping done. The surgeon will use that to determine whether to do an AV fistula or to insert a graft. Once that decision is made, get it done!

Catheters keep you alive until you get a long-term access. Catheters are not the best access for dialysis. Once you have a graft of AV fistula the quality of your dialysis will improve greatly.

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If I remember correctly, it should be changed each time. Cleanliness is a big part of successful dialysis. Call your Nephrologist or the Nurse Practitioner.

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It should be changed every time he has dialysis.

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