In India, majority of patients on dialysis are 'self paying' because of limited health insurance coverage available from government as well as private insurance providers. Hence, cost of treatment becomes one deciding factor to choose between the two modalities of dialysis - hemodialysis (HD) and peritoneal dialysis (PD). Aim is to compare the monthly cost of maintenance hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis at our center. Majority of patients at our center are on thrice a week hemodialysis and three times a day peritoneal dialysis. These patients were asked to submit their total direct cost of treatment of last three months. It included cost of dialysis, erythropoietin, other medicines, monthly laboratory tests, hospitalization cost, travel cost, and any other directly involved in the treatment. Monthly cost (Indian Rupees, ) was then calculated by averaging the three month cost for each patient. The monthly cost of hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis was then compared using 'independent sample t-test'. Thirty five patients were finally included in the analysis (21 on HD and 14 on PD). Demographic profile between the two groups was similar in terms of age, sex ratio, period on dialysis, hemoglobin, blood urea nitrogen, and creatinine. Total monthly cost of dialysis was similar in both the groups ( 29,252 ± 6859 vs. 28,763 ± 5486, P = 0.85). The lower cost of hemodialysis procedure per se as compared to peritoneal dialysis procedure cost ( 14,669 ± 1376 vs. 19,528 ± 4072, P = 0.000) was compensated by higher cost of erythropoietin ( 7160 ± 3353 vs. 3093 ± 1889, P = 0.002) and travel cost ( 1654 ± 1085 vs. 76 ± 66, P < 0.0001) to equalize the monthly cost between the two groups. Our analysis showed no difference in the monthly cost of hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis and hence, for self-paying patient in India, cost of treatment should not be a deciding factor while choosing between the two modalities.
Keywords: Cost of dialysis; hemodialysis; peritoneal dialysis.