Vol 5, No 4 (2020)
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Published online: 2020-10-22

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The functioning of patients on haemodialysis. Age as the main determinant of functional condition

Joanna Stanisławska1, Dorota Talarska2, Tomasz Niewiadomski3, Tomasz Ptaszyński4, Mary Kalfoss5, Magdalena Strugała6
Medical Research Journal 2020;5(4):231-237.


Introduction. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a progressive disease, and in spite of the progress of medicine, the care of specialized medical staff, and the patient’s efforts, many of them develop its end-stage. The use of renal replacement therapy, haemodialysis, has provided patients with an opportunity to prolong their life, but due to complications, it leads to the deterioration in the quality of life.

To identify factors affecting the functioning of haemodialysis patients.

Materials and methods.
The study involved 98 patients on haemodialysis, 37 women and 61 men. The average age was 59.65 ± 15.51 years. The research tool was the Barthel Index, IADL and ESAS-R scale, i.e. a scale of experiencing symptoms that may be associated with haemodialysis.

The mean renal replacement therapy period was 42.76 ± 50.30 months. The most common cause of haemodialysis was chronic glomerulonephritis (21.43%), diabetic nephropathy (18.37%), polycystic kidney disease (12.24%) and hypertensive nephropathy (9.18%). In the study group, the average score on the Barthel Index scale was 90.10 ± 14.82, while the IADL score was 20.24 ± 4.72 points. Women showed a slightly higher ability in basic and complex daily living activities. People up to 60 years of age showed a slightly higher ability. According to the ESAS-R scale (7–10 points), fatigue and drowsiness were the most intense symptoms. People older than 60 years of age more often experienced pain (p = 0.048), malaise (p = 0.203), appetite disorders (p = 0.232), other problems (p = 0.042).

In spite of their older age, the patients showed quite good motor skills. The differences between men and women in the assessment of the severity of somatic symptoms slightly disappear in the elderly. Women showed a slightly higher ability in both basic and complex daily living activities. Older people experience more haemodialysis-related symptoms.

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