Due to a number of factors, chronic kidney disease or end stage renal disease (ESRD) causes a person to experience a total and irreversible loss of kidney function, leading to the eventual need for dialysis or transplantation. ESRD can be caused by a number of conditions including nephritis, inherited diseases, hypertension and diabetes.

In 1997 there were approximately 230,000 ESRD patients in the U.S. This rate is growing at approximately 7% annually. During the same time period, there were approximately 157,000 patients in Western Europe, 161,000 in Japan and 230,000 throughout the rest of the world.

Except for a fortunate small number of patients who receive transplants (12,000 per year), patients rely on dialysis to remove the toxic waste products and excess fluid from the body. There are two major methods for providing dialysis-hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis; hemodialysis treatment is the most prevalent, treating 86.1% of ESRD patients.

Hemodialysis separates the waste products and excess water artificially from the patient’s blood by diffusion and ultrafiltration. Treatments generally last from three to four hours and re-administered three times a week in a clinic or hospital.

Peritoneal Dialysis-removes water products from the blood by using the peritoneum, the lining that covers the internal organs located in the abdominal region. This treatment, generally conducted by the patient, introduces a solution into the peritoneum, through a surgically implanted catheter, allowing this lining to act like a dialyzing membrane.

Specialty Hospital Jacksonville’s Dialysis Department provides both peritoneal and hemodialysis to our patients.