Thank you Zach. Initially Davita did not report the incidents to the Colorado health department, which is even more troubling. Dr. Fox below said he has only seen one mix-up in 22 years, but those are only the ones that were reported. These incidences could happen more often than is reported.
According to the Gazette: http://www.gazette.com/articles/dialysis-102290-three-mix.html
Mix-ups with reusable dialyzers don’t occur often, though. An official with the Colorado health department said the Colorado Springs cases are the first she’s encountered in seven years at the agency, and Dr. Stephen Fox of Pikes Peak Nephrology Associates said he had seen only one in his 22 years of practice.
“So to have two incidents in a short span of time is very unusual and very troubling,” said Fox.
Lazarus said that getting the wrong dialyzer rarely puts the patient at risk. Sterilization of dialyzers after each use kills most pathogens, including MRSA, he said, so Preston Price is likely in the clear.
“In 99 percent of the cases, it doesn’t matter. It’s like wearing someone else’s underwear; it’s not pleasant, but it doesn’t hurt anyone,” said Lazarus. “There’s a big psychological issue: ‘My blood is going through this artificial kidney that someone else has used.’”
More troubling is the patient who was exposed to Hepatitis C, because neither that virus nor AIDS can be killed with current sterilization techniques, he said.
And there’s no guarantee that the cleaning and sterilization process will go according to plan. In 2007, a 71-year-old Muskegon, Mich., woman being treated at a DaVita center died after being hooked to a dialyzer that wasn’t properly rinsed after cleaning. The corrosive cleaning agent got into her bloodstream and killed her.