Kidney Transplant, Conservative Care, or Dialysis: How to Know Which Treatment Plan is Right for You

When a person has kidney disease, they have to make some hard decisions about the type of treatment option they believe is right for their particular situation. Every individual has the right to the type of treatment option they believe is best for their particular needs. Typically, this means choosing between having a kidney transplant, conservative care or dialysis.

Dialysis

As a person approaches end stage kidney failure, it is common for people to choose dialysis as a kidney failure treatment option. A failing kidney can no longer eliminate waste and fluid properly, needing the help of dialysis to perform this function on a routine basis. When it comes to receiving dialysis, a patient can receive this treatment option in a hospital, a clinic or in the comfort of their own home. When and where a patient receives dialysis is really up to them and their doctor. It is important to make sure that a patient has a well thought out emergency plan when receiving dialysis treatments. A patient could be snowed in for many days, the clinic they usually visit may change their hours of operation or some other obstacle to their receiving treatment may arise that needs to be dealt with in a timely manner.

Getting a Kidney Transplant

When it comes to facing down kidney failure, the prospect of having a kidney transplant is one treatment option that works to restore kidney function through a donor kidney. It is important to note that a kidney transplant is not a cure for kidney disease. Rather, a kidney transplant is a treatment option that will come with the requirement of being on medication for the rest of a patient’s life. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the donor kidney will not be rejected by the patient’s body. In the event that this happens, a patient may need to go back on dialysis and reconsider their treatment options.

Conservative Care

The thought of continuing dialysis or enduring a kidney transplant is not something every patient will find appealing. While the former treatment options may be ideal for some patients, there are many who suffer with kidney failure that simply want to let their situation run its course. In the event that a patient chooses the path of conservative care, their doctor will look more towards options to relieve any physical or emotional issues that arise and orient treatment more towards making the patient feel comfortable. While this option will undoubtedly lead to the death of the patient, it is important to understand that patients who choose conservative care tend to believe the burden of pursuing other treatment options outweighs any benefits obtained from continuing with these other treatment options.

Kidney disease is a life-altering diagnosis. When a patient learns that their kidneys are on the verge of failing, they must be prepared to decide the type of treatment option they believe is best for their situation and personal needs. Many people suffering with kidney failure can live reasonably productive and normal lives if they choose to properly manage their condition.

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