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We'll its time for a new access

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  • We'll its time for a new access

    Hello All!

    As most of you now I have been on here before regarding my grandmother. She has had a perm cath in since March and has been infection free since May. We were able to take a few vacations this summer. Anyway it is time for her to have a new access placed in her arm. This time around we are hoping to have better luck. Our neph has sent us to a more advanced hospital and a new surgeon. The new surgeon ran a test and found out she could have an AV fistula (our former surgeon never did this he just looked at her arm and said she could not). The surgery is scheduled for this Friday. Since this type of access is new to us, does anyone have any suggestions regarding a fistula. Are there certain types of things I should be looking for infection or clot wise, or is it basically the same as a graft. I am somewhat educated on the fistulas but still do not know all there is to them. Thank you all!
    God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  • #2
    An AV fistula is the gold standard for dialysis access. You seem to already know what they are. Your surgeon will (or should) explain to you what to look for as trouble signs. You will need to check it many times a day to make sure it is running (buzzing). Depending upon how deep it is, you may need an inexpensive stethoscope to hear the sounds that the fistula makes. Your grandmother will be given a soft rubber ball (sometimes another shape) to squeeze. She needs to squeeze that ball many times a day, working up to 750 squeezes per day. This can be done while watching television, talking on the telephone, etc. She should not try to do that many squeezes right at first or her hand and arm will be so sore she won't be able to close her fist. If you ever cannot hear the sounds that the fistula makes, head immediately to the ER because it means it is clogged up and that is an emergency. The signs of infection would be the same as following any surgery -- fever, pain, redness, swelling, discharge, warmness to the touch.
    To the stars through difficulty!


    • #3
      She will have a bit of pain for a few days, but the meds will handle that. Infection is rare (mine didn't even require a dressing). My best advice is to do the squeezing exercises religiously. It will pay off in the long run.
      Whatever does not kill me makes me stronger...Neitzsche


      • #4
        Thank you both for your comments they helped. I hope everything works out ok. She now has a boil and is having chills today, so I hope another infection is not in the works for us. You prayers would be greatly appreciated.
        God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.


        • #5
          I will definitely try to play waffle game and five nights at freddy's the game and it's so interesting