Before you get on to PD

There are some important things you should discuss with your surgeon and nephrologist before you get the catheter placed for Peritoneal dialysis.

Discuss with the doctor who is going to place the catheter if he is going to do it laproscopically. Laproscopically means they will use a much smaller incision which means much less healing time.

Talk to him about where exactly he is planning to put the catheter. Make sure the "exit site" is not at the point where you wear your pant belt as this increases the risk of infection.

Also make sure (talk to the doc) that the PD cath comes out of the stomach in such a way that the cath goes downwards rather than upwards from the exit site. Some docs like to try different things. Fair enough. Just make sure they don't try it on you and go with the tried and tested mechanism where you are concerned.

Ask the doc if he can infuse a little PD fluid into the peritoneal cavity immediately after surgery to prevent the tip of the cath from touching the walls of the peritoneum. There might be severe pain for the first few days after cath placement otherwise.

Discuss the company whose transfer set and PD fluid they would recommend. Make sure they choose someone with an excellent network in the country. It makes it very easy to travel. This is important because to change the company, you need to change the transfer set.

Talk about manual exchanges versus using a cycler. Some companies have portable cyclers which gives you additional flexibility. Using a cycler leaves you practically free during the day.

Learn the 6 step washing technique from your doctor or clinical coordinator. Make sure you follow this religiously before EVERY exchange. And also make sure you follow the procedure they teach you to clean the exit site after a shower.