Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis
What is continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD)?
Twenty million Americans—1 in 9 adults—have chronic kidney disease (CKD) and another 20 million are at increased risk of developing the disease. In patients with CKD, the kidneys are often unable to remove waste products from the blood, so they must undergo regular dialysis, in which waste products are removed from the blood directly before they build to dangerous levels.
Most patients requiring dialysis, or a cleansing of waste products from the blood (a function the kidneys are no longer able to perform effectively), undergo the traditional form of hemodialysis, which is typically done four times a week, for up to four hours each session. This means that they are often unable to work a normal schedule, or to go on vacation without access to a dialysis center.
Nearly 150 patients have successfully received the CAPD catheter at Hurley’s Radiology Department.
Patients now have an alternative. CAPD is the only type of peritoneal dialysis that is done without machines. CAPD cleanses and filters the blood slowly and continuously throughout the day. That means that patients don’t experience the highs and lows that occur with hemodialysis. The procedure also allows patients greater freedom, since they perform it themselves, four or five times a day — at home, work, and even while on vacation.
How does CAPD work?
The outpatient catheter placement takes place in Hurley’s Radiology Department. The minimally invasive surgery is done under local anesthesia and IV sedation. During the procedure, the radiologist places a soft plastic tube, called a catheter, in the abdomen (or peritoneal cavity) between the bladder and the rectum. After the patient has recovered from the surgery, the patient regularly puts a bag of dialysate (about two quarts of liquid) into the peritoneal cavity through the catheter. The dialysate stays there for about four to five hours, where it filters the blood before being drained back into the bag and thrown away. While the dialysate is in your peritoneal cavity, you can go about your normal activities at work, school or home.