When your kidneys stop working, toxins and fluid build up in the body and cannot be released. PD uses the lining of your abdomen (belly) to gently remove this waste buildup from the blood through a solution known as dialysate. Instead of needles, dialysate gets passed in and out through a surgically placed tube, called a catheter, in your abdomen. The soft, flexible catheter is about the width of a pencil and can easily be hidden under your clothes as you go about your day. Over several hours, the fluid pulls waste from your blood and exits the body by way of the catheter. Because PD treatments can be performed several times a day, it is the dialysis option most similar to your natural kidney function.
Your catheter remains permanently in the abdomen, and is taped down on the outside of the body so that it doesn’t interfere with everyday activities such as work, exercise, recreation, showering or sexual activity.