Category Archives: Dialysis

Dear Dr. Spry, Is Glutathione safe for PD dialysis patients? Thanks.

Glutathione is a normal constituent of food and is a nutritional supplement that is generally accepted as safe by the Food and Drug Administration. I do not know of any problems with glutathione supplementation for patients on peritoneal dialysis.

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney-Related Health Questions

My grandma is 89 years old and just diagnosed with stage 4 chronic kidney disease. She also has congestive heart failure. Is she too old for at home dialysis?

The decision to perform dialysis therapy is a decision that your grandmother and her nephrologist will have to make together. There is no age limit to starting dialysis. There have been studies that suggest that patients in the older age … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Nephrologist

My 60 yr old brother is on 24 hour dialysis in ICU. The dialysis machine goes down for several hours each day. The nurse said it is because the machine is filtering the toxins and removing excess fluid from his body and toxins clog up the machine. They have to clean it and rewire it to start it again. Does that sound accurate? I can’t help but wonder if it is a faulty machine, inaccurate amount of anticoagulants (or other meds), or not being monitored appropriately. It seems if they call it 24 hour dialysis, it would work for 24 hours a day.

I assume that you are asking about Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy (CRRT) or Slow Low Efficiency Dialysis (SLED). These are dialysis techniques that are used in the intensive care unit (ICU). Despite being continuous, there are a number of reasons … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions

My mom is going through dialysis. She is becoming very weak. She feels very thirsty but can’t drink water. She’s always complaining about her head spinning. Her breathing is difficult and she uses the nebulizer due to drinking small amounts of water. No urination at all. Please help.

I am not able to provide a specific diagnosis based on the information that you present. Your mother needs to have a complete history and physical examination. I suggest that you and your mother consult with the nephrologist who is … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Nephrologist

My husband has been undergoing dialysis since 2017. So far: 3 surgeries for peritoneal catheters, a fistula that was ruptured during the 3rd dialysis, a temporary catheter while waiting for the graft and for it to “cure”, a first and second thrombectomy, and now another temporary catheter. Something is very wrong here. 1. Are there other treatments? 2. Is there a special center-hospital that specializes in kidney disease?

Yes. Dialysis is a complicated process and complications are known to occur. I would suggest that you discuss your concerns with the nephrologist who is caring for your husband. I would hope that your husband is on a transplant list. … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Nephrologist, Transplantation

Is it typical for a dialysis patient to produce pure white urine?

I would not consider white urine to be normal in any patient, including a dialysis patient. White urine would suggest some type of infection or mucous in the urine. This should be evaluated by a physician.

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Blood/Urine Testing For Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Kidney-Related Health Questions

Hello Dr., Thank you for reviewing my question. I am asking if there is a comprehensive checklist of diagnostics and other pre-surgery checks for patients getting ready to undergo a vascular access surgery? Are there different iterations based upon the type of access being created? I can only find ones that the creators want thousands of dollars for and I can’t pay that to say the least. I did review the guidelines which were very helpful. Thank you.

I am not a surgeon. I see many patients who need vascular access. The first thing to do is to develop a plan of what type of treatment you are expecting. Questions that need to be asked have to do … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Transplantation

At 80, with stage 4 recently diagnosed, does dialysis really make sense?

The decision whether to undertake dialysis versus continue on with conservative management is one that you and your nephrologist make be considering the potential benefits that dialysis might bring to relief of your symptoms balanced against the risks to making … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Nephrologist

My father got two Hemodialysis sessions per week in Mexico but now he feels really bad. One of his legs is in pain and he can’t walk because it is swollen. Why is this happening? He is 65 years old.

I am unable to make a specific diagnosis without performing a complete history and physical examination. There are many causes of pain and swelling in a leg that need to be evaluated by a physician. I recommend that your father … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions

Are there treatments available (dietary or otherwise) before a person needs to go on dialysis?

With advanced kidney disease, dietary restriction of protein to about 0.8 grams per kilogram per day and a low salt diet are generally advocated. It may also be important to limit potassium and phosphorus in the diet. You may have … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Diet/Nutrition, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Transplantation