dry weight, that elusive, magical number

The elusive dry weight. That magical number that controls every treatment. Take off too much and you can experience the dreaded cramping.  Take off too little and you leave with that heavy feeling, or even worse. The bottom line is that the kidneys control the fluid in your body, and how your body gets rid of it. If they are not working properly, your  body is going to have a  fluid buildup somewhere. Continue reading

my fistula: good, bad, and the ugly, part II

One thing about dialysis, it is not for the faint of heart! You have to get used to the sight of blood very quickly. Another day I waited the usual 10 minutes after taking the needles off, and holding the sight to stop the bleeding, I stood up to gather my things. I heard the nurse up front yell” Sit down, Mrs. G, sit down! I looked down just in time to see  blood spewing from my arm like a volcano; all over me, my gear, my clothes, my feet, and the floor. That was the last time I wore a pink shirt and khaki pants to dialysis. Black is the new red, in my book!! Continue reading

in-center

Now that I’m settled into the routine of home hemo treatments, I can take a moment to reflect on what it was like to do dialysis in-center. I remember early on, like 10 years ago or more, when the nephrologists were pushing me into starting dialysis, I went to several clinics (full disclosure, the clinics were owned by those self-same nephrologists). All I remember  was the overwhelming smell of death, and staring at what appeared to be comatose bodies hooked up to machines.

Is it any wonder I refused to consider dialysis? I recently told my newest, and bestest, nephrologist, that his colleagues had done a grave disservice to potential dialysis users by not presenting a more positive outcome, and explaining that it really was possible to achieve life after dialysis. He agreed! Continue reading