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Hemodialysis Access Management

AV grafts and fistulas may develop low blood flows, an indication of clotting or narrowing of the access. In this situation, the AV graft may require angioplasty, a procedure to widen the small segment that is narrowed, or thrombolysis administration of "clot busting" agent.

For some patients, long-term catheter access must be used. A catheter is a tube inserted into a vein in either your neck or chest. It has two chambers to allow two-way flow of blood. Once a catheter is placed, needle insertion is not necessary.

Catheters that will be needed for more than about 3 weeks are designed to be tunneled under the skin to increase comfort and reduce complications. (see our Central Venous Access page)

Preparing for Your Procedure

Before Your Procedure

Your referring doctor's office will schedule your appointment with us and provide you with all information related to preparation and expectations for your specific condition and procedure.

You will need to arrange for a family member or friend to take you home after your procedure. Please note that you will not be allowed to drive yourself or to take a bus. You must have someone escort you by car or taxi.

When You Arrive For Your Procedure

Please wear comfortable clothes and leave all valuables at home. When you come to the main hospital you may go directly to the Surgical Day Care Unit on the basement level of the Dahod Building. This is where you will check in and prepare for your procedure. They will take you to the Interventional Radiology suite. If your procedure is a day procedure, not requiring an overnight stay, you will be brought back to this area when your procedure is complete. Your companion is encouraged to accompany you to check-in and may wait in the waiting area during your procedure.

After Your Procedure

Your recovery will depend on the type of procedure you have. Your doctor will be able to tell you what to expect after the procedure for your path to recovery. If your procedure does not require an overnight stay, you will likely return to the Surgical Day Care Unit. If you will be admitted to a patient care unit, your belongings will be transferred to your room for you and your companion will be notified.

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