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News2019-01-18T16:52:38-05:00

News & Events

Discover new information and educational offerings that we provide. Explore our newsletters, blogs and upcoming webinars/conference calls.

Just a Dad with Kidney Disease

January 11th, 2023|

By Gene Blankenship, DPC Board Member Being a dad with kidney disease is something that I never imagined when I was younger.  Actually, I never once pictured myself as a person who would be challenged by kidney failure, even though I watched my dad "Big Gene" struggle with end stage renal failure all my life until his death when I was 12 years old. Now, my weeks each have an automatic 16 hours at the dialysis center (20 hours with travel) during “prime time” completely scheduled for me until I receive a transplant.  Those 20 hours are the perfect time for school games, plays, family events etc. This presents the challenge for a [...]

COVID is Surging Again

January 4th, 2023|

We are now at the end of the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic and once again in a winter surge. According to data from the CDC, hospitalizations have surpassed what was seen this past summer and for people 60 or older – the group most vulnerable to more severe infection, that number has drastically increased since mid-November. In part, this latest surge can be attributed to XBB.1.5, the latest Omicron subvariant, which has evolved to be better at evading immunity from both vaccination and previous infection. There are other factors that play into the surge though, including time of year (viruses survive better in colder, drier weather) and human behavior such as holiday gatherings, [...]

Recipe of the Month: One-Pot Chicken and Dumplings

January 1st, 2023|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. Our featured recipe for January is the perfect cozy meal for winter weather: One-Pot Chicken and Dumplings Recipe created by The KidneyRD Team Ingredients Makes 6 servings 5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter divided 1 small yellow onion minced 1 stalk celery thinly sliced 2 carrots diced medium 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour divided 3 cups low sodium chicken broth **see note 1 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken 1/3 pound green beans trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (or just [...]

Reducing Mortality Risk Through Physical Activity – Is There an Activity Pattern That is Best?

December 6th, 2022|

Can you get the mortality risk reduction benefits being a “weekend warrior” instead of just regularly active? A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of four published cohort studies on the topic suggest just that. The four studies, published between 2004 and 2022, totaled 426,428 participants (weighted mean age, 44.5 years) and looked at the relationships between different physical activity patterns and the risk for adverse CVD outcomes. “Weekend warrior,” which is one or two sessions per week, “regularly active,” which is multiple sessions spread out over the week, and inactive were all looked at to see if weekend warrior and regularly active participants fared better than inactive participants for CVD outcomes using self-reported questionnaires. In [...]

Recipe of the Month: Kidney-Friendly Ginger Cookies

December 2nd, 2022|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. December’s recipe is here just in time for the holidays: Kidney-Friendly Ginger Cookies Recipe created by Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT Ingredients Makes 24 cookies 2-1/4 cups all-purpose white flour 2 teaspoons ground ginger 1 teaspoon baking soda 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves 3/4 cup butter 1-1/8 cups granulated sugar 2 egg whites 1/4 cup honey Instructions Preheat oven to 350° F. In a medium bowl combine the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon and [...]

Improving Pregnancy Outcomes for Women on Dialysis or with a Kidney Transplant

December 1st, 2022|

New research suggests that pregnancy outcomes are improving for women on dialysis or with a kidney transplant. Hayet Baouche, MPH, of APHP-Necker-Enfants Malades Hospital, REIN Registry in Paris, France and colleagues reported in Clinical Kidney Journal that from 2010 – 2020, the frequency women on dialysis becoming pregnant increased. There was a decrease in hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and polyhydramnios, as well as lower rates of neonatal and perinatal deaths compared to previous decades, likely attributed to advancements in obstetric and neonatal care, and progress in fetal monitoring and dialysis treatments. A systematic review of 14 retrospective and prospective studies was performed, representing 2,364 women on dialysis (92.6% hemodialysis; 7.4% peritoneal dialysis) and 2,754 [...]

Recipe of the Month: Cauliflower Potato Salad

November 9th, 2022|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. November’s recipe would be a great addition  to a Thanksgiving spread: Cauliflower Potato Salad Recipe created by The KidneyRD Team Ingredients: Makes 6 servings 1 large russet potato peeled, cubed into 1/2" cubes (about 1 Cup) 1 medium head of cauliflower cut into small florets (about 4 1/2 Cups) 3/4 cup vegan mayonnaise 1 dill pickle chopped (about 1/2 cup) 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 2 tablespoons dried dill or 4 tablespoons fresh dill chopped A pinch of pepper to taste 1/4 red onion thinly sliced or diced 2 celery stalks chopped [...]

Say What? Hearing Aids Available Over-the-Counter for as Low as $199, and Without a Prescription

November 9th, 2022|

By Phil Galewitz October 17, 2022 Starting Monday, consumers will be able to buy hearing aids directly off store shelves and at dramatically lower prices as a 2017 federal law finally takes effect. Where for decades it cost thousands of dollars to get a device that could be purchased only with a prescription from an audiologist or other hearing professional, now a new category of over-the-counter aids are selling for hundreds of dollars. Walmart says it will sell a hearing aid for as little as $199. The over-the-counter aids are intended for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss — a market of tens of millions of people, many of whom have until now avoided [...]

The Case for Personalized Kidney Screening for People with Type 1 Diabetes

November 3rd, 2022|

A new analysis by the Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications study group (funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health) makes a strong case for taking a more personalized approach to screening people with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) for kidney disease. New findings suggest that urinary albumin excretion rate (AER) could be personalized to individuals with T1D to decrease costs and increase the rate of early detection. People with T1D have about a 50% risk of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD) over their lifetime; if individuals who are at a lower risk could be tested for AER less frequently than the current [...]

Building Legacy Through Advocacy

October 27th, 2022|

By Yolonda Brisbane, DPC Grassroots Manager As the Grassroots Manager for Dialysis Patients Citizens (DPC) Yolonda recruits and coaches new DPC patient advocates, helps plan and execute our Annual Advocacy Day, and hosts Patient Ambassador training calls. She came to DPC having led youth ambassador programs for the New York State Office of Children and Family Services and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America. For her, elevating the voices of dialysis patients is personal work. "When I was fourteen, I lost my father to kidney failure when he refused to go on dialysis. I had no clue about what dialysis was. Years later, my mother had to go on dialysis. My brother [...]

Supreme Court Erases Kidney Patients’ Insurance Protections

October 27th, 2022|

By Megan Hashbarger, DPC Vice President of Government Relations and Jackson Williams, DPC Vice President of Public Policy A U.S. Supreme Court ruling has nullified the law that protects dialysis patients from discrimination by insurers, threatening the system of financing kidney care that has stood for 40 years. The Court ruled that employer health plans may limit dialysis benefits. For four decades, employers understood the law as prohibiting limitations that only applied to dialysis. Some health benefit consultants encouraged a few small employers to disregard the law by paying no more than Medicare rates for dialysis. DaVita sued them, and one of the cases was appealed to the Supreme Court. The [...]

The Social Worker – Patient Relationship: One Social Worker’s Reflections

October 27th, 2022|

By Jean Carosella, LCSW In April 2021, I retired from dialysis social work after working in the same clinic for almost 44 years. I had actually planned to retire a year earlier but the pandemic played a major role in my staying on another year. I just couldn’t leave knowing the stress and worry that COVID was creating for everyone in the clinic, patients and staff alike. But now a year into retirement, I can see one positive outcome for me as a result of the pandemic. COVID forced me to slow down and take the time to reflect on what my role as a dialysis social worker has meant to me. I [...]

Anemia in People with Chronic Kidney Disease

October 27th, 2022|

By Jay Wish, MD Anemia is defined as a lower-than-normal level of hemoglobin in the blood. Hemoglobin is the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to all tissues and allows those tissues to carry on their functions, including the creation of building blocks for energy. Hemoglobin is what makes red blood cells red, and this explains why people with low hemoglobin levels may appear pale. Hemoglobin levels less than 13 in men and less than 12 in women is considered anemia. Anemia is common in people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and may have many causes. It is estimated that 15.4% of people with CKD (stages 1-5) have anemia, compared to [...]

Navigating a Renal Diet: Decoding the Mystery

October 27th, 2022|

By Fanny Sung Whelan, MS, RDN, LDN How to navigate a renal diet based on your kidneys’ needs No matter what stage of kidney disease you’re in, all of the different diet recommendations can cause your head to spin. Pair it with other conditions you may have, and you’ve got a real recipe for confusion! So how can you sort out all of the differences in what you can and can’t eat? Here we are going to outline the diet guidelines for the different stages of kidney disease. Disclaimer: it is important to discuss any diet changes with your health care team before you proceed. Everyone’s needs will differ based on the individual. [...]

Conquering Dialysis Fatigue

October 27th, 2022|

By Patricia McCarley, RN, MSN, ACNP and Felicia Speed, PhD, LMSW Patients on dialysis may complain of an intense feeling of tiredness or fatigue with 60-97% of patients finding it as important a health outcome as mobility or pain. While it may be difficult to identify the exact cause, patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) or end stage renal disease (ESRD) have several factors contributing to fatigue, including uremia, an increased level of waste products in the blood, and anemia, a decrease in red blood cell production. Anemia is a condition in which your body does not produce enough red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. Fatigue is one [...]

Advanced Care Planning: Turning “What If?” Into “Here’s How”

October 27th, 2022|

By David L. Mahoney, MD, FASN, FASDIN A number of years ago, I attended a lecture on Advance Care Planning. The speaker was a very engaging man who had recently dealt with end-of-life issues for a loved one. There were about 150 people in attendance at the lecture, which began with a series of questions: “How many of you have life insurance?” Virtually every hand in the room went up. “How many of you have a will?” About three quarters of the hands were raised. “How many of you have a living will?” About 10% of hands were raised in response to this question. I think that this illustrates the fact that we [...]

Telehealth with a Behavioral Health Professional: What to Know Before You Start

October 27th, 2022|

By Kirsten Weir If you or a family member is managing chronic kidney disease, you’re probably thinking a lot about physical health—the health of the kidney and the rest of the body. Caring for your behavioral health is just as important. And with telehealth options that let you see a behavioral health professional from your home, it’s more convenient than ever. “The increased availability and acceptance of telehealth might be one of the few positive changes to come out of the [COVID-19] pandemic,” says Amy Walters, PhD, a clinical health psychologist and the director of Behavioral Health Services for St. Luke's Humphreys Diabetes Center. There are very good reasons to establish care with a [...]

Digital Health Records – You can now access them, but not easily

October 7th, 2022|

On October 6, 2022, new federal rules took effect that require health care organizations to give patients unrestricted access to their digital health records. These rules that were passed under the 21st Century Cares Act are designed to empower patients by not only giving them the ability to access their own data, but also decide who to share that data with, which was previously not the case. This means that patients can better understand their care, shop for services, and engage in their own research. It also removes roadblocks such as fees and delays that were the norm for patients requesting their medical records before, despite HIPAA requirements providers turn over records when patients ask [...]

Recipe of the Month: Spider Cheeseball

October 1st, 2022|

Get a brand new, kidney-friendly recipe* delivered to your inbox each month, courtesy of Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD, CLT, a member of the Ed Center Advisory Council and Founder & CEO of the Kidney Nutrition Institute. October’s recipe is perfect for a Halloween get together, or just anytime you’re craving some cheese (disguised as a spooky spider or not!): Spider Cheeseball Recipe create by Jessianna Saville, MS, RDN, CSR, LD Ingredients: Makes 16 servings 1 8 oz package, softened cream cheese (Check your packages carefully. Lowfat is not always the lowest in sodium.) 2 oz feta cheese crumbled 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 cloves garlic minced (If you love garlic, we actually did 3 garlic cloves and it tasted fantastic.) 1 teaspoon dried oregano [...]

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