If you or a loved one will soon be starting home dialysis to sidestep having to go to a dialysis center multiple times each week for treatment, then you will need to prepare a special space in your house for the necessary supplies and machinery. While your at-home dialysis training will include specific information about the requirements for setting up the area in your home you will use for treatments, you can get a head start by following each of these tips:
Plan for the Patient to Sit in a Comfortable Reclining Chair
Since the home hemodialysis process takes a few hours, it is important the patient sits in a comfortable chair that reclines. If you need to purchase a new reclining chair to use, it is important to note that stains from blood are not unheard of from issues during inserting and removing catheter needles. For this reason, avoid chairs with fabric that is light in color or hard to remove stains from.
Purchase Some Shoebox-Size Plastic Containers with Lids
Each day when you do a home dialysis treatment, you will not only use the dialysis machine and dialyzer cartridge kit, you will also use each of the following items:
- alcohol prep pads
- dialysis catheters
- heparin syringes
- saline syringes
- a tourniquet
In addition, you will use a lot of gauze pads and perhaps other specialty supplies.
To make each day's treatment routine easier, you should purchase at least five plastic tubs with lids that are about the same size as a shoebox. Into each tub, sort one treatment worth of supplies so you have everything all ready to go when it is time to start treatment.
Determine if You Will Need to Store Dialysate and Plan a Location for It
When performing home hemodialysis, the dialysis machine will require many liters of dialysate fluid. If your home uses well water that isn't pure enough to use to make dialysate, then the medical equipment company will deliver premixed dialysate to your home. Since you need large amounts of this liquid, you will need to store about a pallet's worth of it each month.
Since you will be storing lots of heavy liquid and a delivery driver will need to bring it into your home, make sure you clear out a space about the size of a traditional spare bedroom's closet. Finally, you should store the boxes of dialysate near both an entry door and where you plan to do the dialysis treatments.