Peritoneal dialysis (PD)
In this form of therapy, the cleaning function of the kidneys is supported or carried out by the peritoneum of the abdominal cavity. A minor surgical procedure is used to permanently insert a soft tube (catheter) into the abdominal cavity. Through this catheter, a special watery solution is introduced into the abdominal cavity that binds waste products, which are filtered through the peritoneum. The solution for peritoneal dialysis is a sterile fluid mainly consisting of glucose or aminoacids which helps with waste removal by the peritoneum. After several hours, the dialysis solution is saturated with waste products from the blood and is drained from the abdomen, then replaced by fresh solution in order to continue the cleaning. This cycle is usually repeated about four times a day but can also be performed once per day under special circumstances. It must be performed carefully to avoid risks like peritonitis which is an infection of the peritoneum. This procedure is easy to learn. That is why patients can carry out this form of dialysis treatment unassisted and in the comfort of their own homes.
- Fewer changes to your daily routine, compared to hemodialysis, especially as you do not need to travel to the dialysis center for treatment. Integration into working life is often considered to be more feasible as well.
- Fewer restrictions with regard to eating and drinking. Checkups at the treatment center are only necessary monthly or quarterly.