When your kidneys stop working, your body needs a new way to do the work your kidneys used to. One option to help your body function without your kidneys is dialysis. A second option is kidney transplantation.

Dialysis is the most common treatment for kidney failure. Advances in the field of dialysis enable you to receive treatment at a dialysis center or in the comfort of your own home. Our nephrologists, in partnership with Henry Ford’s dialysis provider partner Greenfield Health Systems, work with you to determine the treatment choice that is best for you and your lifestyle.

What is dialysis?

Dialysis keeps your body in chemical balance by keeping a safe level of calcium, sodium and potassium in your body and removing wastes. Dialysis also regulates fluid status in the body, which helps control blood pressure. There are two types:

  • Hemodialysis: Done at a dialysis center, a machine serves as an artificial kidney and filters the blood to remove wastes and extra fluids through tubes connecting you to the machine. Instead of going to a dialysis center, the treatment also can be done in your home.
  • Peritoneal dialysis: This is the most common form of at-home dialysis and uses a thin membrane called the peritoneum to perform the process. A fluid called dialysate fills the abdomen and pulls wastes and extra fluid from the blood using the peritoneal membrane as a filter. Once the wastes have been absorbed, the dialysate is drained and the abdomen is filled with fresh dialysate. This process is repeated daily several times under your doctor’s supervision.

How does dialysis affect my lifestyle?

Many dialysis patients live normal, active lives for years. This is dependent, however, on several factors, including your medical condition, age and being able to follow a consistent treatment schedule.

Is there a dialysis center nearby?

For your convenience, we offer numerous locations throughout the metro Detroit area.

Take the Next Step

Contact us to schedule an appointment, call (800) 436-7936.

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Please call 911 if you have an emergency or urgent medical question.

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Henry Ford Health is committed to ensuring our Deaf or hard-of-hearing patients and visitors have equal access to all services. We provide the appropriate auxiliary aids and services, including qualified sign language interpreters, TTYs and other assistive listening devices, at no cost. To request assistance, call 313-916-1896 or email [email protected].

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