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A word used in the phrase: adequacy of dialysis. A measure in dialysis that indicates
if you are receiving the amount of dialysis necessary to help you live long and well.
There are two ways to measure (Kt/V and URR).


A decrease in the number of red blood cells present in the blood, which can be due to
blood loss or a decrease production of red blood cells due to iron deficiency, poor
nutrition, or disease. Symptoms of anemia include fatigue, weakness, and shortness
of breath on exertion.


A medical procedure in which a balloon catheter is inserted into your vascular access
to improve the blood flow. This may be needed if you have a stenosis or clotted
access. This procedure takes place in the Radiology Department at a hospital.


A French word meaning noise that is used to describe the sound that blood makes
when rushing through a blood vessel or dialysis access. A bruit can be heard with a
stethoscope or by holding your access against your ear. A bruit heard signifies that
blood is flowing through the access and that it is working. The absence of a bruit
should be reported to your dialysis center immediately.


Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN). Combination of waste products (nitrogen and urea) in the
blood normally excreted by the kidneys.


An element found in the body that is important for bone growth and formation, blood
clotting, nerve and muscle functioning and the activation of certain enzymes.


(Continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis). Daily self care dialysis treatment that
uses the peritoneum (lining of the abdomen) as the filter to cleanse the blood of
toxins and remove excess fluid from the body. Dialysate fluid is instilled into the
abdomen and left in the abdomen for several hours while patient does his daily


A catheter is a tube inserted into a vein in your neck, chest, or leg near the groin for
Hemodialysis. It has two chambers to allow a two-way flow of blood. A catheter is
implanted in the abdomen for peritoneal dialysis.


(Continuous Cycling Peritoneal Dialysis). Daily self care dialysis treatment that uses
the peritoneum as the filter to cleanse the blood of toxins and remove excess fluid
from the body. This type of dialysis uses a cycler machine to do many exchanges
while patient is sleeping.


The rates that waste products in the blood are removed through dialysis expressed in


One of the many waste products in the blood produced by normal tissue breakdown
and removed by the kidneys, or by dialysis in patients with renal failure.

Used with permission from the 5-Diamond Patient Safety Program of the Med-Atlantic Renal
Coalition ERD Network. For more information please see
PE 06035 (9/11) 1 of 2

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Solution containing water and chemicals (electrolytes) that passes through the
membrane in dialysis to remove excess fluids and wastes from the blood, also called


Cleansing the body of unwanted toxins, waste products and excess fluid by filtering
them from the blood.


In peritoneal dialysis this means draining out the used fluid and putting in fresh fluid.


End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). The stage of kidney damage that requires dialysis
or transplantation to maintain life. Another term for permanent kidney failure.


The surgical joining of an artery and a vein so that the vein enlarges due to the flow
of arterial blood. A fistula is a type of access; also know as an arteriovenous fistula.


In dialysis, surgical placement of a material between an artery and vein to create a

circulatory access for Hemodialysis.

Hemodialysis Removal of excess fluids and waste products by passage of blood through an artificial

A measure that indicates how well waste products have been removed by the dialysis
treatment. K = dialyzer clearance. T = time. V = volume of water a patients body
contains. The formula is clearance multiplied by time, divided by volume.

Nephrologist Doctor specializing in kidney disorders.


A form of dialysis in which the lining of the abdomen, the peritoneal membrane, acts
as a natural filter.


An element necessary for normal body functions, especially bone formation.


An element needed by the body for normal muscle, nerve function and cell


An element found in the body that helps regulate the bodys fluid content.


Also known as Dry Weight. It is your weight when excess fluid has
been removed.


To transfer an organ, tissue, etc. from one person to another.


Urea Reduction Ratio (URR). Percentage based on how much blood urea nitrogen
(BUN) was removed during a dialysis treatment. Indicates how effectively urea and
other waste products have been removed.


A pathway to the bloodstream. Accesses for Hemodialysis are

fistulas, grafts and catheter. Access to the peritoneal cavity for peritoneal dialysis is a

References: MARC Health Literacy. Stam, L. (2010)

100 Questions and answers. Core Curriculum for the Dialysis Technicians
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