a fews thought about my Dialysis these days

  1. heat wave –  the clinic air conditioner had a nervous breakdown following last week’s high temperature record day on Thursday and so Friday we had an hour or so of heat although the day was less scalding.  On Monday, I wore shorts to clinic but I never shorts because the old a/c unit always seems to over do it and it is too cold for shorts.  A/c was out on Monday.  Now this morning my decision is shorts or jeans?  If I wear shorts and it is cold they have heated blankets, they call them blankets but real world would call them flannel sheets.  But I am leaning toward jeans.
  2. Peripheral neuropathy –  had a couple of bad days of pain with this.  To  a look online and noted that tighter blood sugar level control might help.  So I adjusted my diet a smidge, I had been bending the rules some.  Better result last night, I got to sleep with no pain.  The two nights prior was not so great.  I only managed about three hours of sleep.  I was getting up and walking inside my home.  I also stand behind a big easy chair and walk in place and watch the late late show on TV.
  3. health communication between doctor and patient – The one troubling observation I have about the health care system is how much, too much reliance on telling patients information only verbally.  From my brief stint studying adujlt education at Georgian College, one thing that was stressed was hearing loss as people age.  My personal learning style is both aural but primarily written/visual.  I need to see it on the page.  Very little is given in writing.  I assume this is a time constraint not a legal defense of some kind CYA.  In another sense patients are genearlly so fed up waiting long times in the waiting room to get in to their appointment that consciously or subconsciously they may subvert their grasping and retaining all their information by their desire to get finished and finallly at laong last get to go home.   As on old technical writer, I may be biased toward wanting written information. I do think that using a single channel of communication, speaking alone, is a mistake and less effective in helping patients do their own health management.
  4. Parathyroid –  dialysis patients have to fight to keep their parathyroid under control.  It is a complex thing related to calcium and phosphorus levels.  I learned one thing this past month at clincic — we see our nephrologist once a month — that my parathyroid enlargement is not a piece which could be removed surgically, but is the whole gland.  The problem with that is to be a viable kidney transplant candidate you need to have your parathyroid. If mine is removed I am out of the running for a transplant.  The best thing I can do is to be religious in taking all my calcium carbonate pills (extra strength TUMS) with meals and snacks.  There is a medication treatment for the parathyroid but it costs a small fortune and the Ontario government is very reluctant to approve this med.
  5. weight loss – or as |I like to call it, the magic number.   Earlier this year I was coming in for dialysis around 119 kg ro as high as 121 (particularly after the weekend and its extra day of eating and drinking).  Partly from intent and partly from loss os appetite from my horrendously long lasting winter cold I lost some weight.   Dipped down to 112kg coming in.  Now I am up a titch to where I am coming in at 113 to 115kg before dialysis.
  6. heart rate problem – that earlier episode of rapid heart beat rate has been absent, medication control seems to be working fine.  I see my new cardiologist, not that I had one before, next week down in Richmond Hill.  There is no cadiologist in the Midland area.  There are two in Barrie but their waiting lists were over 12 months.  One question my cadiologist has been asked is am I a viable candidate for kidney transplant.


Author: William J. Gibson

62 year old - writer/photographer Canadian, survived open heart surgery, received kidney transplant, sometimes dour, sometimes amusing, over six feet in height, severely follicle challemged

3 thoughts on “a fews thought about my Dialysis these days”

  1. I had my para thyroids removed before transplant (surgeon tucked one into the muscle on my arm) ……..Also had my thyroid removed. Pills – yes . Good luck!

  2. As you may (or may not) know, I believe the issue of patient communication is one of the keys to quality dialysis care. Sadly, patient complaints often relate – in one form or another – simply to poor communication. It is a complex issue. Patient health literacy affects outcomes – but there is little focus on it. The system should strive for patient accountability – but how can it be achieved without optimum, ongoing communication.
    In summary, quality dialysis care requires patient literacy, patient involvement in their own care, and patient trust in the system, among other things. All of the above depend on communication.

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