Dialysis and Access Interventions are minimally invasive procedures performed to improve blood flow in the fistula and grafts placed in the blood vessels of dialysis patients. Dialysis is a process used to treat patients whose kidneys are not working properly. It involves a special machine and tubing that removes blood from the body, cleanses it of waste and extra fluid and then returns it back to the body.
Your doctor may recommend a Dialysis and Access Intervention to treat:
Prior to your procedure, your blood may be tested to determine how well your liver and kidneys are functioning and whether your blood clots normally. You will receive specific instructions on how to prepare, including any changes that need to be made to your regular medication schedule. You will be given a gown to wear during the procedure.
In these procedures, X-ray imaging equipment, a balloon catheter, catheter, guide wire, sheath, stent and a medical device that dissolves blood clots may be used:
There also are medical devices that can be used to dissolve the clots mechanically. Your interventional radiologist will decide which technique is most appropriate for you.
Stents are specially designed metal mesh tubes that are collapsed when they are inserted into the body and then expanded inside the vessel to prop the walls open. In some cases the stent may have an artificial fabric covering. Other equipment that may be used during the procedure includes an intravenous line (IV) and equipment that monitors your heart beat and blood pressure.
Angioplasty and vascular stenting: Using imaging guidance, an inflatable balloon mounted at the tip of a catheter is inserted through the skin into the fistula or graft and advanced to the blockage. There, the balloon is inflated and deflated. In this process, the balloon expands the vein or artery wall, increasing blood flow through the fistula or graft. A stent may be placed to hold the vessel open.
Catheter-directed thrombolysis: Using X-ray guidance and a contrast material that helps show the blood vessel, your interventional radiologist will insert a catheter through the skin into a vessel (artery or vein) and direct it to the thrombosis, or blockage.
The blood clot will then be dissolved in one of two ways:
Premier's Interventional Radiology Clinic facilitates case management in an outpatient setting.
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