Dialysis and Venous Access Management in Morristown, NJ
At Advanced Vascular Associates, we combine medical excellence, state-of-the-art technology, and a compassionate, team-based approach to quickly diagnose and treat your condition.
Kidney Failure Services
For patients whose kidneys are severely diseased, we offer dialysis access services. Our fistula rates are among the highest in the country and we have received numerous awards for our dialysis access care.
When a patient’s kidneys are unable to filter their blood effectively, hemodialysis may be deemed necessary. When performing dialysis, your doctor will use a machine called a dialyzer. This machine will perform the function of the patient’s kidneys by filtering their blood. In dialysis access, a doctor creates an easy-to-access entry site in the patient’s bloodstream. Often placed under the skin in their arm, leg, or chest, it enables quick, safe, and easy flow of blood to and from the body during dialysis. Dialysis removes waste and excess minerals, such as salt and potassium, from the patient’s blood, and helps to control their blood pressure. Blood moves to and from a tube from the patient’s body to the dialyzer. The dialyzer filters their blood and then it returns to their body through another tube. At Advanced Vascular Associates, we offer the full range of dialysis access and dialysis access management, including:
Some common questions that patients ask our doctors include:
Where is a hemodialysis catheter placed?
Your hemodialysis catheter will be placed in one of your large veins. A very common site that doctors will utilize is the superior vena cava or SVC. A catheter will be placed by your doctor, he/she will puncture the internal jugular vein in the neck. This is mostly done on the right side of the neck. Your doctor will then place the catheter downward towards the chest. Alternatively, an SVC catheter can also be inserted via subclavian veins. However, this route is an inferior option to most doctors because the groin area is more prone to infections and also because the patient will not be able to sit upright.
What is the difference between grafts and fistulas?
Our doctors often get asked what the difference between an AV graft and an AV fistula. Both, however, are different types of hemodialysis access. The A, which stands for artery and the V for vein. Therefore, there is some connection between an artery and a vein. The hemodialysis machine needs a faster flow than a vein can provide, but not necessarily as fast as an artery.
An AV fistula is a direct connection between the patient’s artery and one of the nearby veins. This is actually the absolute best option for gaining access that a patient can have because it is using all of their own tissue. The fistula also resists clotting and infection.
An AV graft, which is also on occasion called a bridge graft, is an indirect way to create a connection between the artery and a vein. In this case, a plastic tube is most commonly used, but on occasion, a donated cadaver artery or vein can be used.
How long does a dialysis graft last?
The hemodialysis graft is oftentimes ready to use about 3 weeks after the patient’s surgery. However, AV grafts are usually not as long-lasting as AV fistulas, but if the patient cares for the graft well, it can last for several years.
Schedule an Appointment with Advanced Vascular Associates
Doctors at Advanced Vascular Associates and Vein Care Center provide the latest and most effective vascular access services including Fistulas, Grafts, Catheters. Call (973) 540-9700 today to schedule a consultation.