If you choose home hemodialysis, your treatments will be similar to what you would receive in a center, but they will take place at home, under your control and with a care partner. Your care partner can be your spouse, a family member or a friend whom you trust and who will be able to help you with your home treatments on a regular basis.
Before you start home hemodialysis, you and your care partner will need to go through a training program. The program spans 4 to 8 weeks with training sessions 3 to 5 days a week, during which you undergo dialysis. You will learn how the dialysis machine works and how to operate and monitor the dialysis process. Once you are trained to perform hemodialysis at home, you will still have access to continuous support in the form of on-call nursing coverage 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. You will receive additional guidance during monthly visits with your health care team.
You can perform these treatments at anytime throughout the day. They do not need to be at the same time everyday, so you have the ability to adjust your treatments based on your schedule. You can also travel with some preparation. People who dialyze at home feel more independent and in control of their treatment, which leads to a more positive attitude about their illness and a greater feeling of well-being. Having the flexibility to adjust the length and frequency of treatments may result in better outcomes for your health.
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