Peritoneal dialysis (PD) can be an excellent (if not better for some patients) alternative to hemodialysis. Peritoneal dialysisuses a natural membrane inside your abdomen (peritoneal membrane) as a filter to clear wastes and extra fluid from your body and to return electrolyte levels to normal.

You will need to have a peritoneal dialysis catheter placed in your belly (dialysis access) before you begin dialysis.

Peritoneal Dialysis

A PD catheter is a flexible silicon tube (Tenckhoff ) that allows dialysis fluid to enter the abdominal cavity, dwell inside for a while, and then drain back out again.

There are several different designs and manufacturers, but there is no evidence that one type of catheter works better than another.

Peritoneal dialysis is a good treatment option for people who have kidney failure. Advantages include:

  • Few dietary or fluid restrictions.
  • No needle sticks.
  • Independence and ability to normalize daily routines.
  • The ability to do the dialysis at home on your own schedule.
  • Reduced dependence on blood pressure medicine.
  • Fewer problems with anemia.

 The process of doing peritoneal dialysis is called an exchange and it includes the following steps

  • Fill: Dialysis fluid enters yourperitoneal cavity
  • Dwell: While the fluid is in your peritoneal cavity, extra fluid and waste travel across the peritoneal membrane into the dialysis fluid.
  • Drain: After a few hours, the dialysis fluid is drained and replaced with new fluid.