• Patients of kidney failure, requiring lifelong dialysis, are in for some relief in terms of better quality of life with a hospital in the tri-city claiming to be the first dialysis centre in the region, and among a handful across the country, to bring a new therapy system which has become a gold standard in Europe and in advanced countries elsewhere in the world.

 Introducing media persons to the 5008/5008S system using the latest ‘Online HDF’ technology, kidney and transplant specialist Dr Manish Singla of Mayo Hospital, Mohali, said though the system consumes the same time - four hours per dialysis session – as the previous outdated systems being used by other hospitals, it provides a higher degree of blood purification, better blood pressure control, less requirement of costly Erythropoietin injections and better overall quality of life. 


Photo By: Life In Chandigarh

 
Using the new therapy system will not only ensure that the patients no longer feel constant tiredness and lethargy, and lead a near normal life, but their average life expectancy following kidney failure will also increase substantially from two-three years to 5-7 years, he added.
 
Informing that around 0.1 percent of population suffers from permanent kidney failure, needing lifelong dialysis, he said there would be more than 3000 such patients in Chandigarh tri-city alone and more than 30,000 patients in the region.
 
Dwelling on the cost of dialysis, Dr Singla informed that a normal dialysis session costs anywhere between Rs 1500 and Rs 2500 and a patient has to undergo two sessions a week. In Mayo Hospital, the new therapy will cost Rs 500 per session more. But, since the Online HDF dialysis technique removes up to 10 times bigger toxins from the body, and improves the haemoglobin level, the additional cost is more or less offset with less need for the expensive Erythropoietin injections, saving a patient an estimated Rs 4,000 to Rs 5,000 per month, he claimed.
 
Asked about future prospects of regenerating failed kidneys, he said advanced research in stem cell therapy has raised hopes that the first artificial complete organ to be successfully developed in the world could be the kidney. So far artificial tissues and artificial tissue-cum-machine combinations have been developed, but not complete organs. The trials on an artificial kidney have passed the second stage and now these have to be tried on humans. If all goes well, we could see artificial kidney transplants becoming a reality in the next two to three years, he added.