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AV Fistula

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  • AV Fistula

    I have been on dialysis for 8 months I have a central venous catheter. At DaVita they wanted me to get a AV fistula and of course the infection and they pushed and pushed so I got one my question is now they act not so impressed what happens when this doesn't work can I keep the catheter or will they try to force me to get another av fistula?

  • #2
    Keep your central venous catheter until you know the fistula is working properly. They can't make you get a fistula. They'll tell you it's better for you, but I kept my central venous catheter for 1.5 years, all the while DaVita telling me I needed a fistula. I refused to get the fistula. Eventually, I went on PD, but even then, I kept the central venous catheter until I knew the PD catheter worked and I was trained on it. If you have an AV fistula and it doesn't work and you don't want to switch to PD, then a central venous is what you needed anyway. Good luck!

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    • #3
      Typically they won't pull your catheter until: 1) your surgeon tells you that you can use the fistula (about 2 months), 2) you have had at least one week of dialysis runs using the fistula (and it works well), and 3) everyone is in agreement that it is safe to pull. I know I had to go back to the surgeons office for the final pulling of my catheter.

      At first I was very reluctant to get a fistula, but now I am glad I did. It is nice to be free to take a shower, go swimming, and wear warm shirts to dialysis!!

      Good Luck to you!

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      • #4
        I am also glad I had my central catheter removed. I was also afraid of Infection and bathing was a bother. There was also pain there when I accidently pushed pressure against it. The only gripe I have with my fistula is the unsightly bumps in my arm.

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