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What is elective dialysis?

Q: My mother-in-law, 57 years old, who has diabetes for the last 15 years has been diagnosed with renal failure and been advised elective dialysis. What does elective dialysis mean? Her creatinine level is 5.5 mg, urea 129 mg and uric acid is 7.8 mg. Please advice.

A:The term ‘Elective Dialysis’ in reference to your mother-in-law’s medical history means the need to treat her with dialysis since her kidneys are not functioning. Review of above data reflects irreversible loss of greater than 90% of her normal kidney function at her age. This would result in increased accumulation of waste products and toxins in her blood, and complications like anaemia, kidney bone disease and increased swelling over the body parts. Patients with kidney failure suffer from lack of energy, increased weakness and poor appetite among some of the symptoms. Dialysis would help to clean the blood while helping to manage the symptoms and the named complications.

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