Specialties

Renal Access Clinic of Houston puts our patients care above all else. We pride ourselves on delivering quality, compassionate, and prompt care for patients.  We specialize in treatment of temporary and permanent access for patients who are receiving dialysis treatment and suffer from End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), or kidney failure.

Patients with kidney failure or who suffer from End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) are unable to filter waste from their blood and must have their blood filtered mechanically in a process called hemodialysis.

Before a patient begins hemodialysis sessions, a surgeon must prepare a vascular access site. It is through this site, that the blood is removed, cleaned and returned continuously during a dialysis session. To maximize the amount of blood cleansed during hemodialysis treatments, the vascular access should allow continuous high volumes of blood flow.

In the past, access procedures required hospitalization. But, thanks to technological advances, we can now provide cutting-edge access care in an outpatient setting. Our patients enjoy greater convenience while avoiding the risks of open surgery, added expense and prolonged hospital stays. We understand that this access is your lifeline to hemodialysis, and we take great care in preserving these sites.

There are three kinds of vascular access for hemodialysis.

  1. Hemodialysis Catheter / Central Venous Catheter (CVC)
  2. Arteriovenous (AV) Fistula
  3. Arteriovenous (AV) Graft.

 

HEMODIALYSIS CATHETER

The hemodialysis catheter is a short-term dialysis access and is usually placed in emergency situations or as a temporary access while a permanent access develops. A catheter is a tube inserted into a vein in your neck, chest or leg near the groin. It has two chambers to allow a two-way flow of blood. Problems with catheters can include clotting, infection and a narrowing of the veins in which they are placed.

We remove, repair, reposition, exchange and insert these catheters as needed. These catheter procedures are very simple and require only a local anesthetic.

Removal:

The removal of a catheter is accomplished by giving a local anesthetic; the skin is then pulled away from where the catheter exits and it is removed. A suture (stitch) may be used to stop any bleeding and it may be removed the following day. The procedure usually requires less than 15 minutes.

Insertion:

Inserting a catheter starts when the doctor locates a vein, in the neck or groin large enough for the placement of the catheter. Local anesthetic is given, and the catheter is inserted. The doctor will then take an x-ray to ensure that the catheter is in the proper position. At the end of the procedure, the catheter is secured into position with two sutures (stitches) which will not be removed. This procedure is completed in less than 30 minutes.

Repair, Reposition or Exchange:

Catheters that are not properly functioning may be fixed by repairing, repositioning, or exchanging the old catheter with a new one. The amount of time needed for these procedures varies but all should require less than 30 minutes. A local anesthetic will be given as needed and an x-ray will be taken for repositions and exchanges.