When dialysis is working too well

The ultrafiltration of 1166ml is the highest amount of water drawn from my body using two 1.5% peritoneal dialysis solution.

The uf (ultrafiltration) for this morning was 1166ml. That is the amount of water pulled out from my body at the end of peritoneal dialysis.

Apart from losing the ability to filter waste from my blood, my kidneys are no longer able to draw out water as well.

Water retention will manifest in swelling of the feet and ankles. In severe cases, other parts of the body will swell too.

It can accumulate in the lungs causing shortness of breath. Excess water can also cause an increase in blood pressure.

In peritoneal dialysis, 2000ml of solution consisting of dextrose and other electrolytes are filled into the peritoneal cavity. It then dwells in the cavity for 1 hour 34 minutes where waste and water are pulled out from my body through osmosis.

The solution is then drained and fresh solution is filled in. This process is repeated five times within a period of 10 hours. At the end of the entire process, 10 liters of solution would have been used.

Any extra in the solution is water taken out from my body. The usual amount ranges between 600ml to 900ml.

This morning’s was the highest using two bags of 1.5% solution since I started dialysis in August 2018. Add that to the 900ml of urine my kidneys still produce daily and the total water taken out would nearly hit 2000ml.

Dialysis is so efficient that the doctor said I may be dehydrated. That was the reason I have been experiencing low blood pressure lately.

To prevent dehydration and bring up my blood pressure, I have to replenish with the amount of fluid that came out plus 500ml more.

On normal days now, I drink about 2 liters of water. This is a small luxury since most people with kidney disease have to limit their water intake. Some are restricted to no more than 500ml per day only.

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. End-stage renal disease since 2017. Principal Facilitator at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. Former columnist of Breaking Barriers with The Borneo Post. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.