Conditions and diseases

Kidney failure treatment

Hemodialysis catheter insertion

Certain conditions may prevent an AV fistula or graft from being placed. In such scenarios, a hemodialysis catheter may be used to allow for dialysis. The preferred site for placement of the catheter is the internal jugular vein, a large vein in the neck. With an ultrasound probe, the interventional radiologist locates the vein and inserts a small needle. Using the combination of image guidance, a guidewire, and a metal probe, the physician places the hemodialysis catheter, which will run from the right atrium (a chamber in your heart), through the internal jugular vein and out to the skin at the lower neck/upper chest area.

Patients are monitored after the treatment, and pain medications may be given as needed. Patients are given instructions on how to properly care for their catheters and monitor for signs of infection (fever, redness, etc.). The catheter may be used at each dialysis session until a more permanent option, such as an AV fistula or graft, is placed.