What should I do if peritoneal dialysis solution is not working for me?

If peritoneal dialysis solution is not working for you, your doctor may need to adjust your prescription or your dialysis schedule. During peritoneal dialysis, a cleansing solution is infused into the abdomen of a person whose kidneys don't work, where it pulls wastes and extra fluids from the blood. The solution contains dextrose (or another sugar), salt and minerals dissolved in water. A catheter (soft tube) fills the abdomen with the solution. The solution mixes with wastes, salt and liquid, and all are removed when the solution drains out. This filling and removal process is called an exchange.

Because peritoneal dialysis works differently for everyone, your doctor will regularly monitor your progress. Your doctor can do tests to measure how much dextrose your body is absorbing from the solution bag and how well waste materials are being removed. If peritoneal dialysis isn't working effectively enough, your doctor may:
  • increase the number of daily exchanges
  • increase the amount of peritoneal dialysis solution used in each exchange 
  • use solutions with higher dextrose concentrations

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.