NxStage Home Dialysis: Umberto’s Story
“My mother Diana was on dialysis for twelve years,” remembers Robert. “Three times a week for hours at a time, she needed to be at the hospital. Our family saw first-hand how much that had affected her quality of life. Despite the staff’s best efforts to keep her comfortable during her treatments, it was hard to watch how much every session exhausted her.”
When Robert’s father Umberto started needing dialysis in 2019, he knew what to expect. He was sad that his father would need the same challenging treatment and schedule that his mother had.
For a year, Umberto had to travel from his retirement home to Humber River Hospital, three times a week, to dialyze for three and a half hours at a time. It took time, mental energy, and was physically tiring.
“A few months after my dad started dialysis, COVID-19 arrived and Toronto went into lockdown,” says Robert. “On top of everything, we started to be concerned that he would be exposed to the virus during his frequent trips out of the retirement home. He needed this life-saving treatment, but that fear was always in the back of our minds.”
Then, Umberto was given the opportunity to start using NxStage, a donor-funded home-dialysis machine from Humber River Hospital that he could use in the comfort of his retirement home with the help of a personal support worker.
“Since my dad started using NxStage, he has been less tired after sessions,” says Robert. “He now dialyzes daily for shorter lengths of time. He uses the time to watch TV, take a nap, or catch up with friends and family over the phone.”
Robert’s family, who had been living overseas, recently moved back to Toronto and Umberto will soon be moving in with them. The NxStage machine will move with Umberto into Robert’s home, and his personal support worker will continue to visit to manage his dialysis. The machine is only slightly larger than a nightstand and has very simple plumbing and electricity requirements, which his new home can easily accommodate.
“Using NxStage has saved my dad so much hassle, but also has noticeably changed his energy,” says Robert. “We feel really lucky that my dad will be able to move in with us, while continuing his treatment at home.”
The NxStage Program at Humber River Hospital has been generously funded by our donors. Today we would like to thank Greenwin Corp. for supporting this program and changing the lives of patients like Umberto.