Self-delivery of hemodialysis care: a therapy in itself

Am J Kidney Dis. 1996 Jun;27(6):844-7. doi: 10.1016/s0272-6386(96)90522-3.


Patient autonomy, sense of control, and well-being are thought to be enhanced by self-care hemodialysis as a therapy for end-stage renal disease. Dialysis in a satellite setting reduces travel time and can diminish therapy intrusiveness. Health-related quality of life (HRQOL), in terms of functional status and well-being, was measured in a group of patients trained for self-care, and then measured again after these patients were transferred to a satellite unit. Comparison was made with an age- and comorbidity-matched cohort of full-care patients. Patients trained for self-care tended to score higher than the full-care patients in the psychosocial domains of HRQOL, such as role function, social function, and emotional well-being, before and after transfer to the satellite unit. Physiological measurements did not differ significantly between groups at any time during the study, indicating that differences in HRQOL were not attributable to differences in metabolic stability. We conclude that patients trained for self-care hemodialysis experience better subjective quality of life than their full-care counterparts. This study highlights both the usefulness of measuring HRQOL as an outcome of hemodialysis therapy and the potential benefits of therapies such as self-care and satellite dialysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Aged
  • Attitude to Health
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Hemodialysis Units, Hospital
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / psychology
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Outpatient Clinics, Hospital*
  • Quality of Life
  • Renal Dialysis*
  • Self Care / psychology*