Dialysis Patients and COVID-19: Should I get the vaccine? If I get the virus, should I take the antibody treatment?

2021-02-11T12:13:34-05:00February 8th, 2021|Categories: eNews, Immunizations|Tags: |

Written by: Alan S. Kliger, M.D., Clinical Professor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine, and Co-Chair, American Society of Nephrology (ASN) COVID-19 Response Team. As 2021 unfolds, the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Dialysis patients continue to isolate at home, socially distance from family and friends, use face coverings and precautions traveling to dialysis and in the unit. How will this pandemic end? Many patients have important questions about the new vaccines and about new treatments for the infection. First, some facts about the vaccines: What is a vaccine? An injected vaccine is designed to stimulate your immune system to produce antibodies that [...]

Are There Living Kidney Donor Registries?

2020-12-15T14:01:11-05:00December 11th, 2020|Categories: Additional Resources, Fact Sheet, Kidney Transplant, The Kidney Citizen|Tags: |

By Harvey Mysel I’ve often been asked: “Where can I register to get a living donor?” Unlike deceased donation where there’s one national list, (although you can multi-list because some areas have a shorter wait time) there’s no such list for someone looking for a living donor. You must find your own living donor. When you do have someone that is able to be a living donor, many are not compatible with their recipient. Thirty to 50 percent of donor/recipient pairs are not compatible with each other. In such a situation the incompatible donor could still help the person in need [...]

Make Your Wishes About You (My Way)

2020-12-11T11:14:04-05:00December 4th, 2020|Categories: Fact Sheet, The Kidney Citizen, Treatment|

By Elizabeth Anderson, LCSW, DSW and Dale Lupu, MPH, PhD When I was first told I had chronic kidney disease (CKD), I was grateful that there were lifesaving treatments, but I was also scared because I didn’t have a plan. I worried that I might be in pain or become a burden to my family. I felt better when I was able to discuss my desires and healthcare decisions with my family and healthcare team. What kind of medical care would you want if you were too ill to express your wishes? Like most people, you may not have thought about [...]

Having a Kidney Transplant During COVID-19

2020-12-15T14:01:36-05:00November 27th, 2020|Categories: Additional Resources, Fact Sheet, Kidney Transplant, Mental Health, Stress Management, Support, The Kidney Citizen|Tags: , |

By Jewel Edwards-Ashman I started the year 2020 anticipating that I’d enter kidney failure and have to undergo my second kidney transplant. But I didn’t expect to start doing home dialysis and eventually have transplant surgery in the middle of a pandemic. Transplant surgery in ordinary circumstances comes with a high level of stress and anxiety. Having a kidney transplant during a public health crisis only exacerbated those feelings for me. To reduce my stress and manage my emotions, here are three things I did: I prioritized self-care. Most Americans, even those who aren’t living with chronic illness, have been experiencing [...]

Five Important Questions About Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine

2020-11-24T11:12:00-05:00November 11th, 2020|Categories: eNews, Immunizations|Tags: |

By Arthur Allen, Kaiser Health News Pfizer’s announcement on Monday that its COVID-19 shot appears to keep nine in 10 people from getting the disease sent its stock price rocketing. Many news reports described the vaccine as if it were our deliverance from the pandemic, even though few details were released. There was certainly something to crow about: Pfizer’s vaccine consists of genetic material called mRNA encased in tiny particles that shuttle it into our cells. From there, it stimulates the immune system to make antibodies that protect against the virus. A similar strategy is employed in other leading COVID-19 vaccine [...]

Should I Get a Kidney Transplant?

2020-11-05T15:12:08-05:00November 5th, 2020|Categories: Additional Resources, eNews, Kidney Transplant|

Dialysis patients who are considering whether to pursue a kidney transplant can check out a new resource to help them make that decision. The resource—a guide that was written by patients with End-Stage Renal Disease—provides an overview of the decisions that need to be made when getting a transplant, the rewards and risks involved, and what to expect after the transplant. Patient stories, questions to ask transplant facilities and additional resources are also included in the guide. Download the guide.

Medicare Advantage Now Open for Enrollment

2020-12-11T09:22:52-05:00October 15th, 2020|Categories: Costs for Treatment, Fact Sheet, The Kidney Citizen|

Between now and December 7, dialysis patients are, for the first time, able to choose a Medicare Advantage plan for their coverage. Medicare Advantage is an alternative to traditional Medicare run by private insurance companies. To help kidney patients explore their options, Dialysis Patient Citizens has established Dialysis Plan Choice, an online tool designed in collaboration with Consumers’ Checkbook for dialysis patients to quickly and easily compare their current Medicare Fee-For-Service plan with the options available to them through Medicare Advantage. DialysisPlanChoice.org helps patients and caregivers more easily understand what plans are available to them, the costs are associated with those plans, and, most importantly, which plans [...]

The Importance of Getting a Flu Shot During COVID-19

2020-10-08T09:37:59-04:00September 29th, 2020|Categories: eNews, Immunizations|Tags: |

Flu season is approaching, and it is just as important to get your shot as ever before. People with chronic kidney disease are more susceptible to developing severe flu complications, due to a weakened immune system. The COVID-19 pandemic adds some complexities to flu season this year as there is risk for infection from either illness. Although there is no vaccine available for COVID-19, you can lower your risk for getting the flu by getting the flu vaccine. In fact, the flu vaccine prevented 39 percent of flu cases among people that received the vaccine last year. In addition, the types [...]

Supporting Your Health and Wellbeing Before, During, and After Kidney Transplant

2020-12-11T09:37:28-05:00September 3rd, 2020|Categories: Additional Resources, Fact Sheet, Kidney Transplant, Lifestyle, Mental Health, Physical Health, Stress Management, Support, The Kidney Citizen|Tags: |

By Elizabeth Steinberg Christofferson, PhD and Leah Grande, MA Preparing for and receiving a kidney transplant, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, can be an uncertain and overwhelming process. This article discusses tips to promote positive mental and physical health for yourself or your loved ones. Preparing for a Transplant There are many different emotions associated with deciding to go on the transplant list, and all of these feelings are normal and valid! You may feel excited about the potential for improved health and energy, fewer restrictions on what you can eat and drink (although you still want to eat a [...]

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