Kidney dialysis

RENAL MEDICINE


Dialysis is a treatment used to filter waste products from the blood when the kidneys are not working properly

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About kidney dialysis

Dialysis is a procedure to remove waste products and excess fluid from blood. As such, it's often necessary for many people with kidney failure.

When the kidneys aren't working properly, the body accumulates waste products and excess fluid that would normally be filtered by the kidneys and turned into urine to be passed out of the body.

Need to know

During dialysis treatment, your blood is removed from your body. The best way to do this is by creating a ‘fistula’. This involves an operation in one of your arms to join an artery and vein together to form a circuit of flowing blood. The operation takes about one hour and is usually done under local anaesthetic. From the fistula, your blood is circulated around a dialysis machine and then cleansed, before being flowed back into your arm.

Dialysis is usually carried out several times a week, with each session lasting around four hours. We also provide dialysis treatment for patients who are NHS sponsored as well as overseas visitors.
The team at our dedicated dialysis treatment centre will let you know how to prepare. You'll need to bring any medications you take with you, including any you take during dialysis. This includes protein injections, vitamin D injections and any vitamin supplements.

If you use any other anti-coagulation regime other than heparin sodium, please bring it with you or tell us in advance so we can try to supply it. You'll also need to give us copies of recent blood results beforehand. Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you.
Dialysis is an ongoing treatment which many people can remain on for years. Kidney failure may be temporary and dialysis may only be needed until your kidneys recovered.

Often, someone with kidney failure will need a kidney transplant. Your consultant will let you know what treatment options are available to you.
Hospital stay and procedure

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Kidney dialysis Consultants

Dr David Game

Dr David Game

Renal Medicine (Nephrology)

Dr Michael Robson

Dr Michael Robson

Renal Medicine (Nephrology)

Dr James Pattison

Dr James Pattison

Renal Medicine (Nephrology)

Dr Robin Woolfson

Dr Robin Woolfson

Renal Medicine (Nephrology)

Our Kidney dialysis locations

London Bridge Hospital

London Bridge Hospital

27 Tooley Street SE1 2PR London
The Wellington Hospital

The Wellington Hospital

8A Wellington Place NW8 9LE London

Patient stories

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.