At Cincinnati Home Dialysis, we see the positive effects home hemodialysis has on the lives of our patients every day. They’re living life on their terms and seeing better outcomes in their overall health and wellbeing. If you’re willing to learn to dialyze at home, you’ll need to properly prepare your abode for treatment. Your care team will work with you to develop a personalized plan for your living situation, but in general, here are a few things to expect during the process.
Communicate with your household
Before embarking on this home hemodialysis journey, discuss how this treatment will affect life at home with other members of your household. If possible, you’ll want to determine treatment and storage space in your home that all parties support. Making sure all members of your household are informed about your lifestyle transition can help things go more smoothly.
Needed home hemodialysis supplies and modifications
There are several items and modifications needed to perform dialysis effectively at home.
Special electrical outlet
Your care team will facilitate the modification of an electrical unit in your home to accommodate your home hemodialysis machine. They may also recommend installing a battery backup in case of power failures.
Pure water source
Depending on the quality of your community’s water, you may need to install a water softener or purifier. Some communities in the Cincinnati area have “hard” water, which is safe to drink, but can cause serious problems if it enters your blood in large amounts.
Modifications may need to be made to your home’s plumbing to set up a drainage system for treatment fluids in the location where you’ll be performing dialysis.
It’s important to have adequate lighting in your treatment space to perform home hemodialysis effectively. Place a lamp next to your dialysis chair, or have a bright overhead light illuminate the room.
You’ll be sitting or lying down for an extended amount of time during treatment, so make sure you choose a chair or mattress that’s most comfortable for you.
Should any issues arise during treatment, keep a phone within reach to call a technician or emergency services.
You’ll likely keep about six weeks of treatment supplies on hand, so you’ll need space to put these items. Consider converting existing space in your home into a storage area, or purchase a dedicated cabinet for storing supplies.
Tips for efficient storage
If you have room in a closet or cabinet, try stacking your supplies vertically to take up less overall space. Alternately, you could make use of unused space under beds. It may be beneficial to take supplies out of their boxes and create daily kits that could be stored in accent baskets or existing furniture like dressers and armoires.
Your Cincinnati Home Dialysis care team will be there every step of the way to guide you through the transition to home hemodialysis. If you have concerns about the process, feel free to contact us.