NxStage Machines Improve Quality of Life for Home-Dialysis Patients, Thanks to an Anonymous Donor
For many of us, our healthy kidneys are constantly at work, removing waste and extra fluid from our blood. But for those whose kidneys have failed, they need dialysis to perform that function.
Many of these patients travel to the hospital for dialysis for several hours about three times a week. It is a massive commitment, the commute is not always easy, and having dialysis only three times a week can lead to a lot of fluctuation in their bodies and in their health.
“Research shows that home dialysis is better for their health, because patients can dialyze at home for more hours,” says Rebecca Law, Humber River Hospital’s Home Dialysis Coordinator. “And the best way to bring patients home is to fit dialysis into their home lifestyle.”
For most patients, the more dialysis they have, the less their bodies fluctuate in between treatments and the better they feel. Many home dialysis patients dialyze 5-6 times a week – some even nightly.
But many patients don’t have the physical space to have a home dialysis set up. That’s where innovations like NxStage come in.
NxStage is a home dialysis machine that is only slightly larger than your nightstand – half the size of the traditional home alternative. It is simple to use, and requires very little changes to your home electrical and plumbing.
Ms. Vu lives in a cozy bungalow, home to 4 adults and 4 children. While she was on conventional dialysis at the hospital awaiting her home dialysis machine, she was dialyzing 3 times a week. She felt okay – but never great. She now uses the NxStage home dialysis machine 6 days a week with the help of her daughter-in-law Helen. Helen’s training took only 10 days.
“It was no problem learning to use the machine,” says Helen. “It is easy to use. While she’s having her dialysis she can relax. She watches TV or sometimes she even sleeps.”
“When she had dialysis three times a week, she used to feel tired,” says Ms. Vu’s son Toan. “Now she feels much better. She’s eating more. She looks younger!”
Home dialysis is now an option for patients with limited space. They can learn to do it themselves, or they can have the support of a family member or personal support worker.
“When deciding between home dialysis options, we want to see what will fit best into our patients’ lives,” says Rebecca. “For our patients who live in smaller homes, like Ms. Vu, NxStage is a life changing option for them.”