Home hemodialysis (HHD) is one type of dialysis that offers flexibility for kidney patients. HHD uses a dialysis machine, much like in-center treatment, but the patient and their care partner perform all parts of the treatment at home. Patients and care partners receive thorough training under the guidance of their care team so they feel comfortable and confident performing treatments.
At Cincinnati Home Dialysis, we’ve seen firsthand how patient-first dialysis treatment can positively impact mental health and wellbeing. Here are a few benefits of home hemodialysis.
Schedule HHD to fit your lifestyle
Home hemodialysis may be a good choice for kidney patients who want to prioritize making fewer changes to their current lifestyle. HHD patients, in partnership with their kidney care team, have more freedom in designing their dialysis treatment schedule than in-center patients.
HHD is typically offered in several different formats:
- Four hour treatments performed three times each week
- Two hour treatments performed five to seven times each week
- Overnight treatments lasting between six and eight hours up to six nights each week
The ability for a patient to perform dialysis treatments on their own terms can lead to a greater sense of independence and agency in their own healing.
Save time and money doing treatments at home
Performing dialysis from home is not only more comfortable, but can save kidney patients time and money. Not having to coordinate transportation to a dialysis center three days per week means HHD patients have more time for family, friends, and leisure. Some individuals are even able to maintain employment. And with inflation concerns abound, home hemodialysis can mean significant savings in transportation costs.
Maintain more energy
Home hemodialysis patients may also benefit from maintaining higher energy levels than in-center dialysis patients. Gentler treatment schedules help kidney patients sleep better, feel less tired after dialysis, and experience less nausea and cramping.
More flexible diet
Especially for HHD patients on a shorter, more frequent treatment schedule, there may be more diet flexibility. Dialysis that’s performed on a more regular basis helps reduce the accumulation of fluids, sodium, and potassium.
Greater overall health
Home hemodialysis patients are less dependent on blood pressure, anemia, and phosphorous medications than in-center patients. Not only does this lead to cost savings for HHD patients, but less reliance on medication can contribute to better overall health.
And for HHD patients who may need a kidney transplant, better health improves the chance of being considered and finding a match.
Take it with you
Home dialysis doesn’t necessarily mean patients need to dialyze at home. Many HHD patients love traveling and don’t want to miss out on new adventures with their loved ones. The portable nature of HHD means that with a little planning, kidney patients can perform treatments during their travels.
Before departing, HHD patients should make sure they
- Consult with their care team to plan for different scenarios
- Have enough dialysis supplies, plus extras, on hand
- Identify local dialysis centers near your destination as a backup
- Pack dialysis-friendly snacks
For more information, check out our post on traveling with dialysis.
Kidney patients should always consult with their care team to determine if home hemodialysis is a good fit for their lifestyle and health. Contact Cincinnati Home Dialysis to learn more.