Healthy kidneys work twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year! No rest, no break! Now, since our kidneys are not functioning as well as they should, we need to replace the function of normal, healthy kidneys with an artificial means. That is what dialysis basically is – Artificial kidney function.
It would be ideal if we could get dialysis for as much time as the amount of time healthy kidneys function. Unfortunately, that would not be practical. We would only be doing dialysis and nothing else! However, we must try to reach as close to this ideal as possible.
Many people dialyze for 7-8 hours every night, 6-7 nights a week! This gives very good dialysis. Some people dialyze daily for 2-3 hours. This also gives reasonably good dialysis. Most of us however, get thrice weekly, four hours every time. This is the bare minimum.
With this modality, there is one big disadvantage, however. There is always one gap between sessions that is 2 days long. This gap is very unhealthy and dangerous for the heart. This is because the build-up of toxins and fluids in the body becomes too much for the heart to handle. Studies have shown that most deaths among dialysis patients occur during this 2 day gap. It for this reason that this 2 day period (always co-inciding with the weekend) has been called ‘the killer weekend’ in countries like the US and Australia!
There is fortunately, an easy solution: never give a 2 day gap!
With a little change from your current dialysis schedule, you could easily avoid the 2 day gap. Dialyze every other day. For example, let’s say you start dialyzing on a Monday in a particular week. You would dialyze on Wednesday and Friday. Normally you would dialyze next week also on the same days. However, what you would do under this schedule is to dialyze on Sunday and then next week on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday! The following week you would again dialyze on Monday, Wednesday, Friday. You would continue this 2 week cycle of 7 sessions each.
This gives you an extra session every two weeks which would make sure your body does not have to suffer the harmful effects of a high level of fluid and toxin overload! This would reduce your chances of getting heart related complications greatly as well.
Of course, one problem with this is that many dialysis centers are closed on Sundays. All NephroPlus centers remain open on Sundays allowing our dear guests to take advantage of this beautiful regimen and make sure you never, ever have to suffer a 2 day gap again!