The importance of exit-site infections (ESIs) as a source of peritonitis and catheter loss in continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD) patients is unknown. We collected data on 137 CAPD patients over a 5-year period (2,052 cumulative patient months). Patients with a history of ESIs were more likely to have peritonitis and tunnel infections than patients without a history of ESIs. A larger percentage of patients with a history of ESIs lost catheters and transferred to hemodialysis than those without such a history, independent of the effect of peritonitis. These data confirm the importance of reducing the incidence of ESIs. More information is needed to determine the nature of the relationship between ESIs and peritonitis.