COVID-19 propels peritoneal dialysis among chronic kidney pa
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Nearly 20 lakhs kidney disease patients are in India who require about 34 million dialysis sessions every year. The lives of the patients with diabetes and kidney diseases have been in disarray due to the pandemic, particularly patients on haemodialysis had to frequently visit hospitals for dialysis, most of them are opting for peritoneal dialysis, inform doctors.

According to a recent Kidney International Report, a survey was conducted to determine the effect of lockdown on the care of patients with kidney disease. Approximately 710 patients missed one or more dialysis sessions, 69 required emergency dialysis sessions, 104 stopped reporting for dialysis, and 9 were confirmed to have died. Outpatient attendance in the surveyed hospitals came down by 92.3 percent, and inpatient service reduced by 61 percent. Tele-consultation was started but was accessed by only a small number of patients.

The doctors indicate that second wave of the pandemic had a worse impact which is seen on care of patients with non-communicable diseases, including those suffering from kidney-related ailments. Many patients are now getting treated with home-based Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) -- a way to remove waste products from your blood when your kidneys can't adequately do the job any longer. This procedure filters the blood in a different way than does the more common blood-filtering procedure called hemodialysis.

Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in Kolkata is the only hospital in India to provide remote patient management of Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) Dr A K Bhalla, Chairman and HO Dept of Nephrology, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said "The pandemic has changed our perception of healthcare delivery, making it more remote and digitized. We understand that dialysis is still a challenge for a large number of patients especially for those living in remote rural areas."

Nephrologists can now treat kidney patients from the comfort of their homes without risk of acquiring COVID-19 or any other infection while making hospital visits. Dr Sagar Gupta, Consultant and HOD, Nephrology, Kidney Transplantation, Metro Hospital, said "The advancement enables patients to avail value-added benefits of the painless, home-based, and cost-effective therapy. "