At-home Peritoneal Dialysis Training: What to Expect
Preparing for peritoneal dialysis (PD) training might feel overwhelming at first, but learning how to perform the exchanges on your own isn’t as difficult as you’d think. With a little practice and preparation, you’ll be ready to take dialysis into your own hands in no time.
Setting up your space
The first thing you’ll need to do is set up a space in your home for treatment. A member of your Cincinnati Home Dialysis care team will visit you in your home to check that the space you pan to perform treatments in is safe and sanitary. You will need:
- A clean and well-lit room.
- A way to closed off the room from pets to prevent the transfer of bacteria.
- Storage space for your home peritoneal dialysis supplies.
- A grounded outlet.
- A family member or friend to train with you.
Your care team will help you get everything in order before the training process begins.
PD access site
To perform peritoneal dialysis, a catheter is surgically implanted into your lower abdomen. This is typically done under local anesthesia. The recovery period can range from two days to two weeks. You will be instructed on how to care for your access site to prevent infections.
Once your catheter site has healed, you’ll begin peritoneal dialysis training. This process takes about two weeks. Your care team nurse will show you how to:
- Prepare a space to do an exchange
- Monitor your health and take good notes for your treatment record
- Properly prevent infection by wearing a mask and washing your hands
- Order enough PD supplies to last a month
- Care for and clean your access site
- Properly dispose of medical waste items
- Perform the exchange from start to finish
- Troubleshoot your equipment
- Know when to call your nephrologist
It might sound like a lot right now, but you’ll have plenty of practice with your care team nurse. They will make sure you are performing each step correctly and will continue to practice with you until you are feeling confident.