Patient Education Materials

Patient Educational Materials

Understanding Your Hemodialysis Access Options

This valuable fact sheet from the American Association of Kidney Patients gives a detailed overview of the different types of hemodialysis acess and their pros and cons.

Fistula or Catheter: The Patient’s Perspective

A series of stories from real dialysis patients will give you insight into how they have worked with their healthcare team to choose the best vascular access option for them.  Developed by the Renal Network of the Upper Midwest and the Upper Midwest Fistula First Coalition.

Access = Lifeline

A one page educational flyer for patients, created by the FFBI Clinical Practice Workgroup, gives a quick overview of the advantages and disadvantages for each vascular access type used for hemodialysis.  Spanish Version

Access Options for Dialysis

One page article (page 3) covers access options, why each access type is used, pros and cons of each, proper care for each, and what problems to report to your care team. From the NKF Family Focus newsletter.

Conquering Your Fistula Fear

This three page fact sheet has a wealth of information on how to conquer fear of dialysis (such as needle sticks and blood loss) and fear of the medical setting, health care providers and/or surgery. The article also covers concerns about how a fistula looks and gives tips on dealing with strangers’ questions. Provided by ESRD Network 12, Heartland Kidney Network, with input from the 18 ESRD Networks across the nation.

Dialysis Needle Fear: Easing the Sting

A three page article explains needle fear and has tips you can use before and during needle placement to reduce fear and pain.  Provided by Home Dialysis Central (MEI).

Dialysis Patients Speak: A Conversation About the Importance of AV Fistulas

In this 12-minute video, designed for patient audiences old and new, you will see renal professionals and real dialysis patients telling their access stories from the heart. It is humorous, moving and educational. There is major emphasis on placement and use of AVF as a first blood access, and strong cautionary tales about catheters. The conversational style of the video is non-threatening, sincere and candid. Our hope is that your patients see the video and are encouraged to have discussions about vascular access choices.  Provided by ESRD Network 1, Network of New England.

Doppler Imaging & Vessel Mapping

An illustrated, tri-fold brochure explains what a Doppler study is, types of Doppler studies (Duplex Doppler, Color Doppler), and how to prepare for a Doppler.  Provided by ESRD Network 12, the Heartland Kidney Network.

Maintaining Your Lifeline

This illustrated, 12 page newsletter has information on getting ready for access placement, symptoms to watch for after surgery, and tells you how to check for your thrill and bruit.  It also describes narrowing of the veins (stenosis) and how to prevent it.  Provided by ESRD Network 12, the Heartland Kidney Network.

Phase 1: AAKP Patient Plan

The first book in the three-phase American Association of Kidney Patients Patient Plan. “Diagnosis to Treatment Choice”, explains on pages 7-12 how to work with your care team to deal with your emotions about kidney failure. It also covers depression, anxiety, and how to talk about kidney disease with your family and friends.  Pages 15-16 describes access care steps before the needles are placed to protect you and your access.  Provided by the AAKP.

Phase 2: AAKP Patient Plan

In the second phase of the AAKP Patient Plan, “Access and Initiation”, pages 5-6 gives a detailed overview of fistula placement, from choosing the site to deciding the best choice if a problem occurs.  The book also describes exercises that will help your fistula work better and how to check your new fistula after surgery.  Provided by the AAKP.

Phase 3: AAKP Patient Plan

the third phase of the Patient Plan “Stabilization”, explains narrowing of the veins (stenosis), the most common sites where stenosis occurs and the problems it can lead to – like clotting. This section also tells you what to expect if your fistula develops a clot.  Provided by the AAKP.

Using the Buttonhole Technique for Your AV Fistula

This tri-fold brochure describes the buttonhole technique for putting needles into a fistula, with history, benefits, and types of needles used.  Provided by the Northwest Renal Network.

Your Access Care Pocket Guide

This wallet-sized reminder guide covers the most important points about access care, using a TLC (touch, look, care) approach.  Provided by the The Renal Network, Inc.