Dialysis is a method of treating renal (kidney) disease. Acute renal disease can be caused by things such as infection, toxins and reduced blood flow through the kidneys.
Chronic renal disease is the result of many and varied causes and often the specific cause is not actually identified. Once diagnosed these pets will be placed on special renal diets to reduce the toxic load on the kidneys and medications to support the kidneys. Chronic renal disease is progressive despite all known treatments and both the acute and chronic problem can be fatal.
Renal dialysis involves the removal of blood from the patient, passing it through the dialysis circuit and then returning it to the patient. The dialyser does the job the patient’s kidneys should be doing by removing the toxins in the blood. There are many different types of renal toxins, it is not practical to measure all of these so we measure blood urea nitrogen (BUN) to monitor the therapy’s adequacy. If BUN is removed effectively, then the other renal toxins should also be removed.
In acute renal failure by doing the work of the kidneys, dialysis not only removes the toxins and their potential harmful effects but also allows the kidneys time to heal.