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Assisted Peritoneal Dialysis for Older People with End-Stage Renal Disease: The French and Danish Experience

Clémence Béchade, Thierry Lobbedez, Per Ivarsen, Johan V Povlsen
Peritoneal Dialysis International 2015, 35 (6): 663-6
Older people are the largest and fastest growing group of patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD), and, due to advanced age and a heavy burden of comorbidities, they are usually not candidates for renal transplantation or home-based dialysis treatment. Some of the barriers for home treatment are non-modifiable, but the majority of physical disabilities and psychosocial problems can be overcome provided that assistance is offered to the patients at home.In the present review, we describe the programs for assisted peritoneal dialysis (PD) in France and Denmark, respectively. In both nations, assisted PD is totally publicly funded, and the cost of assisted PD is comparable to the cost of in-center HD. Assisted continuous ambulatory PD (aCAPD) is the preferred modality in France whereas assisted automated PD (aAPD) is the preferred modality in Denmark. Assistants are professional nurses or healthcare technicians briefly educated by expert PD nurses from the dialysis unit.The establishment of a program for assisted PD may increase the number of patients actually treated with PD and may reduce the risk of PD technique failure and prolong PD duration. Compared with autonomous PD patients, patients on assisted PD may have shorter patient survival and peritonitis-free survival indicating that, besides advanced age and the burden of comorbidities, dependency on help may be an independent risk factor for poorer outcome.Assisted PD is an evolving dialysis modality, and may in the future prove to be a feasible complementary alternative to in-center hemodialysis (HD) for the growing group of dependent older patients with ESRD.


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