Kidney Dialysis Center Opening on 131 in Schoolcraft

Kidney Outside 11
Staff of the new Fresenius Medical Care Center on US-131.

By Linda Lane

People across southwest Michigan experiencing kidney failure – 600-800 patients in the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek area alone – will have an in-home training option located in Schoolcraft. Kidney patients will be heading to the new Fresenius Medical Care Center about to open on US-131 south of U Avenue.

A grand opening of the facility is schedule for March 9, from 4-7 p.m.

Patients will receive individualized training from medical professionals as an alternative to getting kidney dialysis three times a week at a dialysis center. The in-home option, hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, will be reviewed and patients trained.

Hemodialysis uses a machine as an “artificial kidney” to pump blood through a filter which removes water and waste as a healthy working kidney does for the body. One treatment at a dialysis clinic typically takes 3-4 hours, 3 times week, whether at a dialysis clinic or at home.

Peritoneal dialysis uses the patient’s peritoneal membrane located in the abdomen, as the filter for blood. A fluid dialysate is injected into the abdomen where it draws out water; later the dialysate is drained. This treatment, called an “exchange,” can be done daily or nightly with two primary methods: the continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD), performed manually by the patient, or continuous cycling peritoneal dialysis (CCPD) which utilizes a cycler to provide the exchange with a small, portable machine. The CAPD is “continuous” occurring within the abdomen as the dialysate filters the water and waste. The CCPD with the cycler occurs at night while the patient sleeps.

“We can offer patients a more natural system that imitates their kidneys, allows them to feel better daily, and live with greater quality of life,” said Amanda Dionne, home therapies program manager at Fresenius. The new center houses four private patient in-home training rooms, a lab, doctors, social workers and nursing offices. A staff of 10-15 medical professionals will work at the new location.

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