|Living with kidney disease and dialysis|
|Living with kidney disease and dialysis|
December's star story is an excerpt from Gloria Ann Jeff-Moore's book, Living with Kidney Disease and Dialysis. Many thanks to her for allowing us to use this. You can buy copies of her book through Amazon clicking on the pictures or in our dialysis book shop.
I feel after enduring a life with kidney disease and dialysis for almost two decades, I could finally share my experience with others out there who are slowly approaching the end stage renal disease or may have already developed the disease.
Well anyway I’m also sharing my experience for my own personal preference, because of the fact that the kidney disease that I inherited, my sisters have also inherited the disease. And now one of my sisters has begun a life with hemo dialysis treatment. This has very much prompted me to complete my book and to share what I know, and believe me I have learned a great deal about the renal diet and how to manage good health between hemo treatment as well as everyday peritoneal dialysis treatment. I believe writing this book and sharing what I know, can also help my daughter in the future if she develops the end stage renal disease and also my sister’s children and my cousins and their children. And any other individuals out there who have any concerns about living with the end stage renal disease and dialysis in general.
Now I don’t protest to know everything there is to know about the renal diet and the management, but I can say that after almost two decades of living my life with this disease and dialysis, I can now say I finally understand the renal diet, and why we fellow dialysis patients need to follow a renal diet. First off, just following your dialysis schedule and taking your prescribed medication isn’t all it takes to continue managing good health between hemo dialysis treatment and everyday peritoneal dialysis treatment. You as the patient play a major part in maintaining your good health. Your dietitian can give you a hand in accomplishing this.
In the beginning you will be prescribed the initial medication, such as vitamins, iron, a phosphorus binder, and a blood pressure controlling medication and any other medication that’s necessary to continue good health with the end stage renal disease, but as soon as you receive your first set of monthly lab test results, the dietitian as well as your nephrologists can have a better idea of how you eat and most importantly, how well you are eating. At that time, there are some main lab test that will be addressed, if whether you have minerals in your body that are too high and in some cases too low. But don’t fret! There are solutions to these problems if they arise. But let me tell you, following them is not so easy, you just have to have the determination and will to do this. I myself, continue to struggle with this everyday as we speak.
There are times when I may eat more than what’s allowed, but I do try my best to take my binders as prescribed. It took me a while to figure out that maybe the way my binders were prescribed just wasn’t working for me, because I’m a very slow eater, so I decided to take half of my binders at the beginning of my meal and the rest towards the end of my meals. And before I became a peritoneal dialysis patient, I didn’t have much issues with my protein and potassium, but in the last eight years I’ve been struggling to keep my protein and potassium levels in normal range as a peritoneal dialysis patient.
My medication regiment has been such a see saw, that I have to keep a file on all the changes that are constantly made to my medication regiment on a regular basis. And speaking of medication, the blood controlling medication that I’ve been taking through my many years of living with the polycystic kidney disease and dialysis has really been quite a struggle for me, and it still is this very day. At one point I was taking three different types of pills and a patch to control my blood pressure, and through all this I’ve had two minor strokes. You see with my blood pressure from time to time being elevated as well as being too low at times, caused me to develop a stroke.
By understanding finally how this medication works with the blood pressure, has helped me to have better control of my blood pressure. I even can recognize the symptoms when my blood pressure is running low or too elevated. Like I said earlier on, the renal diet and medication regiment is major work and can be quite challenging at times. Just remember after starting a dialysis treatment, you should follow a renal diet to manage good health between hemodialysis treatment and everyday.