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JACC Cardiovasc Interv. 2010 Jan;3(1):1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.jcin.2009.10.021.

Catheter interventions for hemodialysis fistulas and grafts.

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Ocala Heart Institute, Munroe Regional Medical Center, Ocala, Florida, USA.


More than 1 in 1,000 patients in the U.S. has end-stage renal disease, and most patients who require renal-replacement therapy undergo hemodialysis. By the year 2020, more than 750,000 patients are expected to have end-stage renal disease, and over 500,000 will require hemodialysis. The greatest limitation of hemodialysis is the finite durability of hemodialysis accesses, which on average remain patent for <3 years but are the lifeline for hemodialysis patients. Catheter-based interventions are successful in restoring flow in more than 80% of hemodialysis accesses that undergo thrombosis and have replaced surgical revision as the treatment of choice for failing or thrombosed accesses. Catheter-based interventions have improved the quality of life for hemodialysis patients by reducing the need for temporary hemodialysis catheters and have prolonged total survival time by preserving existing access sites and by saving venous segments for future access creation. This review discusses the pathophysiology of dialysis access failure, presents the success rates of catheter-based treatments, and illustrates the interventional approaches for treating failing and thrombosed fistulas and grafts.

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