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Treatment / Non-tunneled Catheter

Non-Tunneled Dialysis Catheter Placement

Hemodialysis is a treatment used when your kidneys fail and can no longer clean your blood and remove extra fluid from your body. A hemodialysis access or vascular access is a way to reach your blood for hemodialysis.

Am I a Candidate for a Non-Tunneled Dialysis Catheter?

You need dialysis when you develop end stage kidney failure, typically when you lose about 85 to 95% of your kidney function. When your kidneys fail, dialysis keeps your body in balance by doing the following:

  • Removing waste, salt and extra water to prevent them from building up in the body
  • Keeping a safe level of certain chemicals in your body, such as potassium, sodium and bicarbonate
  • Helping to control blood pressure

A non-tunneled hemodialysis catheter may be used as a temporary catheter while you are waiting for a placement of an arteriovenous fistula, a peritoneal dialysis catheter, or a tunneled catheter.

What to Expect from the Procedure

When you come in for your dialysis catheter, you will either have local anesthesia with sedation, or general anesthesia – whatever you and your interventional radiologist (IR) have discussed prior to the procedure. Using image guidance, ultrasound and x-ray, the doctor will locate the vein that is being used.

The doctor will insert a catheter into a large vein in your neck or chest. Sometimes it may be placed into a large vein in your leg. You will typically have a couple of stitches to hold the catheter in place.

The catheter will have 2 lumens (tubes) coming from your neck or chest, however there will only be one tube inserted under your skin. One lumen carries blood from your body through special tubing connected to the dialysis machine. The other lumen carries cleaned blood from the dialysis machine back into your body.

Recovery

Placement of a dialysis catheter typically takes an hour is performed as an outpatient procedure. There will be slight discomfort over the area for a few days which can be managed effectively with medications. You should limit strenuous physical activities for the first few weeks afterwards.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call IVC at 503-612-0498.

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