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Perit Dial Int. 2000 Jul-Aug;20(4):375-83.

The role of peritoneal dialysis as the first-line renal replacement modality.


Twenty years after its introduction, peritoneal dialysis (PD) is a well-established alternative to hemodialysis (HD) as a modality of renal replacement therapy. Much debate and research is apparent in the literature, comparing hemodialysis and PD as "opposite" modalities and trying to ascertain which modality should be more optimal. In our opinion, HD and PD are two distinct modalities, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In addition, it is clear that for both HD and PD, rates of technique failure are high, causing patients to transfer between modalities. The question is thus not which modality is best, but rather, which flow-chart of modalities makes best use of the advantages of each modality, while avoiding its disadvantages. In this respect, HD and PD appear to be complementary modalities. The better preservation of residual renal function, lower risk of infection with hepatitis B and C, better outcome after transplantation, preservation of vascular access, and lower costs are arguments to promote PD as a good initial treatment. When PD-related problems arise (adequacy, ultrafiltration, peritonitis, patient burnout), a timely transfer to HD has to be planned. This editorial tries to review arguments supporting the complementary nature of both modalities, and especially the role of PD as the first-line renal replacement therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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