(475) Kidney Dialysis [調べる]

Kidney Dialysis
  I was asked to help an American tourist communicate to a doctor when he has dialysis treatment at M clinic, here in Matsuyama. Ive been a volunteer helper for non-Japanese people speaking English, who live in or visit Matsuyama city. Today Id like to talk about this experience and a little information about the dialysis.

  Do you know what kidney dialysis is? I didnt know anything about dialysis so I did a little research on it on the internet and I met him on April 3rd.


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PIC. 2: HD HDF  Hemodialysis   Hemodiafiltration

 Dialysis is a form of treatment for patients with kidney failure as a result of kidney disease. Those patients experience a constant build up of toxins as a part of everyday life (eating, drinking, exercising, etc,).  Those would normally be extracted and excreted by their kidneys, but they have left the building, they use dialysis machines to do much of this job for them. M clinic uses on-line HDF machines.

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Pic. 3: automatic dialysis machine GC-110N

The dialysis treatment can be administered in a specialized clinic. Dialysis in a clinic is usually performed three times a week, and last around four hours. Patients travel from home to the clinic, where they are taken care of by specialized doctors and trained personnel throughout the entire treatment. When not at the clinic, patients can lead as normal lives as possible.

On Monday, April 3 at 8:30, I was waiting for him at M clinic with a woman of M Center who was very worried about his arrival. She tried to contact him the day before but failed.

We got a phone from the nearby hospital. It said that he got to the wrong hospital with his mother. He finally arrived at 9:30, one hour late. He brought a medical letter about his dialysis treatment in the U.S.

We went upstairs. There were a spacious dialysis treatment room, which had about 35 beds, and a lounge, where patients family or friends can wait for them. But his mother and I were the only people in the lounge.

At the beginning of the treatment, I entered the dialysis room with him. His bed was the very end of the row of beds. About twenty patients had already started the dialysis treatment there. At the entrance of the room he was weighed on the scale. The doctor decided how much water must be removed.

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Pic. 4: HDF diagram

He seemed to get used to the treatment. He replied to the doctor he didnt have anemia. Two needles were stuck on blood vessels of his left arm. These needles were connected to the dialysis machine by tubes. One was for taking out his blood to the machine, and the other was for returning the blood to his blood vessel. When the nurse taped the needles on his arm, he took out his own adhesive tape to use. He said, Im allergic to other tapes. He had been having dialysis for seven years, now 48 years old. He had two tiny lumps on his left forearm.

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Pic.5: HDF picture & diagram

During the dialysis treatment he can listen to music with earphones or enjoy DVD on the small display above his bed. After explaining to him I left him and got out of the room. I spent time with his mother talking about various things from family members to President Trump. I didnt get bored while waiting his treatment was completed. Time pasted so soon.

Just before noon, I was called by the personnel. When I got to the patient, he looked a little bit weak. He complained something to the personnel. I could hear him say dry and cramp. I asked him, Are you thirsty?  He moved his legs and his right hand to his chest. I translate his complain to the personnel.

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Pic. 6: HDF drain water

 He quickly understood the complain. He stopped taking out water from his blood and checked his blood pressure. He also increased replacement fluid. His treatment completed 1:40 pm safely.

I was very surprised at three things. First, the American tourist looked for the clinic to have dialysis treatment after arriving Japan. How brave, positive and active he was! Second, the number of people having kidney dialysis because of kidney failure is bigger than I had thought. While waiting for the American at the clinic, I saw many Japanese patients arrive one after another by taxi. Third, todays kidney dialysis machines can do several complicated work automatically. HDF(Haemodiafiltration) machine simulates the work of the kidney very well. I really hope further development in kidney dialysis treatment for patients with kidney failure.

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