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Author Topic: Does having a Fistula put in hurt?  (Read 6833 times)
Dialized
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« on: January 31, 2011, 02:33:16 PM »

I have a permacath in my neck at the moment, however it has started to play up and not work so well. The doctor said I should have a Fistula put in.  My concerns are  the needles might  hurt and I  also hate being put under anesthetic. I was wondering  if anyone has any feedback on the operation and the general day to day effects of having one in place. Thanks :thumbup;
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Ang
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« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2011, 04:29:24 PM »

piece of cake having it put in as you are asleep, it takes about 6 weeks to mature to be able to use,if you have a fear of the needles,use lidocaine about 1.5-2 hours prior and you should not feel to much of any thing.
feel the fistula daily,make sure its buzzing if not get to the e.r
i've had mine for nearly 6 years
good luck with it all
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« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2011, 05:05:24 PM »

Agree with Ang! Don't let needle phobia take control of  you. Nobody likes needles but most people adapt and get on with it.
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2011, 08:07:27 PM »

You don't have to be put under anesthetic. My fistula was put in using a local anesthetic, an "arm block". After I'd had the injection, the surgery didn't hurt at all, not even a little bit. I was fully conscious throughout.

A fistula is the best access because you are least likely to get an infection. Catheters are more easily a source of infection and also limit your ability to have showers etc.

The hemodialysis machine usually priocesses 300ml per minute of blood. A normal vein in your arm (at rest) has a blood flow of around 100ml/min. That's too small a flow for the machine. Joining an artery to the vein to form a fistula increases the size of the vein (over a few weeks) so that the blood flow becomes around 1000ml/min or more.

I don't like being stuck with two needles three times a week, but I think it's far better than having to put up with a catheter. The sting lasts for less than a second.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2011, 08:09:25 PM by Stoday » Logged

Diagnosed stage 3 CKD May 2003
AV fistula placed June 2009
Started hemo July 2010
Heart Attacks June 2005; October 2010; July 2011
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« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2011, 09:22:40 PM »

In my experience, when I woke up from surgery it sarted to hurt an hour after. Since I was in the hospital, they gave me some good pain meds. After a couple day's it did  not hurt, but had to get use to the feeling of having it. My pain though could have had something to do with my diabetes though due to circulation issues.
 
My advice if you do not like big needles is to not watch, try some lidocain cream, and or xanax if you are very concerned. However see how it goes the first time by not looking.
 
Good Luck
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« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2011, 09:58:25 PM »

It's no biggy and you'lll get rid of that rotten catheter.
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« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2011, 03:22:12 AM »

To live is to endure. You'll be OK, why worry about it now, you will have yourself sicker. Take each day as it comes, and thank GOD he gives us tools that we can use.
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« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2011, 03:27:37 AM »

I have had two fistulas - in both cases it hurt for a few hours after the operation - but no more than the Permcath insertion.  It is a REAL pleasure after the Permcath - a lot less disfiguring, less risk of infection, no irritating dressings and all together better.
The needles issue is really a non-issue - it is very much a head thing - if you believe it is going to be agony, then I guess it will!  But it really and truly isn't - its something that you truly will get used to, and it becomes pretty much a way of life.  Good luck.
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Hazmat35
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« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2011, 04:34:47 AM »

I had a fistula put in and have been using it for about 9 months now.  And beileve me, if there is anybody out there with a FEAR OF NEEDLES, it is me!  I do in-center HEMO, and put on the Lidiocane cream on about 1 1/2 hours before treatment, cover it w/ plastic so it soaks in and doesn't get all over me.  By time D starts, you hardly feel anything but a little pressure on your arm.  I don't watch, I talk to other or watch TV to take my mind off of it. 

As far as the operation, you will be a little sore afterwards, but that is to be expected.  But overall, it is very quick, and a piece of cake!  NO WORRIES!!!!!
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Brother Passed away - 1990 - Liver Disease
Diagnosed w/ Polycystic Kidney Disease - 1998
Mother passed away - Feb. 1999 - PKD
Sister passed away - Feb. 2006 - PKD
AV Fistula / Upper Left Arm - September 2009
Father passed away - September 2009
Fistula Gram - January 2010
In-Center Hemo Dialysis - April 2010
Fistula Gram - July 2010
Fistula Gram - July 2012
Fistula Gram - February 2013
Fistula Gram - December 2013

Hating Dialysis since Day 1 and everyday since then!!!!  :)
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« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2011, 09:05:11 AM »

Blokey was petrified of having a fistula created, mostly because he loathes needles and is a big wuss when it comes to pain (and he has seen/heard pain from those with fistulas in his unit!)

However, having the fistula is the best thing he's agreed to since beginning dialysis (I think that, like Stoday, he had his created under local aneasthetic.)  The pain after surgery was far less than he anticipated and the dialysis he receives now is so much better; he's far less tired than he was when he was only using a chest line.  He doesn't even use the numbing cream before a session - in fact, he's never actually been offered it.  He's the biggest baby I know for things like needles and pain so I say, go for it!

 ;D
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« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2011, 07:28:13 PM »

It's just occurred to me that you get less pain with a local anesthetic than a general. That may be because the local lasts much longer.

IIRC my local lasted some 8 to 10 hours.
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Diagnosed stage 3 CKD May 2003
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« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2011, 07:49:06 PM »

i think it depends on where you have the fistula put in. i've had two done in 3 surgeries.  the first two in my wrist were outpatient surgeries and were a piece of cake. the second was in my upper arm (which is the one i'm using now) i spent 2 days in the hospital and a week or so at home on pain meds. but i wouldn't suggest not having one just to avoid the pain.
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« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2011, 06:54:31 AM »

Fistulas are so much better than caths, if only for the freedom of easy showering. I never had any pain when they put it in and never had the need for a numbing cream, though many folks swear by it. Get the fistula done because it's so much better for your health than caths. Good luck!
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« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2011, 05:54:54 PM »

Thanks for the advice, I'm definitely having the fistula done.
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« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2011, 10:02:54 AM »

Thanks for the advice, I'm definitely having the fistula done.
:2thumbsup;
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- wife of kidney recepient (10/2011) -
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« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2011, 02:39:32 PM »

I am wondering, can a person shower following an insertion of a fistula? Like the next day or can you 'not' shower until it matures in the two months it has to mature?
I'm looking at getting one this coming April and I was just wondering, thanks. :grouphug; ???
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I have Neuropathy and Plantar Fasciitis in My Feet
AV Fistula created in Nov. 2011, still buzzing well!
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« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2011, 07:11:27 PM »

Three days after mine.

Two months dosn't bear thinking about...
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Diagnosed stage 3 CKD May 2003
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« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2011, 04:26:36 AM »

When I had my Fistula put it, he created a 3" cut just above the bend in my elbow.  He didn't even use any stitches, he used "Glue" to keep it sealed.  I showered the very next day.  Of course, he told me to try to keep it as dry as possible, but if I got it wet, it was no big deal. 
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Brother Passed away - 1990 - Liver Disease
Diagnosed w/ Polycystic Kidney Disease - 1998
Mother passed away - Feb. 1999 - PKD
Sister passed away - Feb. 2006 - PKD
AV Fistula / Upper Left Arm - September 2009
Father passed away - September 2009
Fistula Gram - January 2010
In-Center Hemo Dialysis - April 2010
Fistula Gram - July 2010
Fistula Gram - July 2012
Fistula Gram - February 2013
Fistula Gram - December 2013

Hating Dialysis since Day 1 and everyday since then!!!!  :)
Cordelia
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« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2011, 08:08:20 AM »

That's a relief to know, thanks :grouphug;
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Diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease at age 19.
Renal Failure at age 38 (2010) came about 2 hrs close to dying. Central line put in an emergency.
Began dialysis on Aug 15, 2010.
Creatine @ time of dialysis: 27. I almost died.
History of High Blood Pressure
I have Neuropathy and Plantar Fasciitis in My Feet
AV Fistula created in Nov. 2011, still buzzing well!
Transplanted in April, 2013. My husband and I participated in the Living Donor paired exchange program. I nicknamed my kidney "April"
Married 18 yrs,  Mom to 3 kids to twin daughters (One that has PKD)  and a high-functioning Autistic son
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« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2011, 07:39:55 PM »

Cordelia, same for me - I showered the next day - did sort of try to keep it dry, but alas not very sucessfully!  It was not an issue; they covered it with plasters and bandages and whatever, which can be removed in two or three days.  It heals amazingly quickly - I was really surprised.  Good luck with the procedure.
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« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2011, 08:29:43 PM »

No issue with showering. You can be clean and smell pretty ASAP :)
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« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2011, 03:11:59 AM »

Thank you, Gandalf :grouphug;
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Diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease at age 19.
Renal Failure at age 38 (2010) came about 2 hrs close to dying. Central line put in an emergency.
Began dialysis on Aug 15, 2010.
Creatine @ time of dialysis: 27. I almost died.
History of High Blood Pressure
I have Neuropathy and Plantar Fasciitis in My Feet
AV Fistula created in Nov. 2011, still buzzing well!
Transplanted in April, 2013. My husband and I participated in the Living Donor paired exchange program. I nicknamed my kidney "April"
Married 18 yrs,  Mom to 3 kids to twin daughters (One that has PKD)  and a high-functioning Autistic son
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