Sioux Falls, SD
For 12 hours every week, many dialysis patients have to sit in a chair and get treatment. Because patients spend so much of their time hooked up to a machine, Avera kept both comfort and care in mind while building its new outpatient dialysis center.
42-year-old Paul Eulberg spends 12 hours every week sitting in a chair. He's been on dialysis for three years because of kidney failure.
"It's not something you want to do, but you have to do," Dialysis Patient Paul Eulberg said.
These last few weeks Eulberg says it doesn't feel like he's wasting as much time on treatment because he now can actually enjoy himself. Avera's new outpatient dialysis center has heated and massage chairs. Every patient also has their own T.V.
"Sports Center. I watch a little soap opera, but don't tell anybody," Eulberg said.
Along with providing comfort, the new technology at the center can also benefit patients' health.
The dialysis machines have Crit-Line technology. It monitors patients' fluid volume.
"That way we can take fluid off a patient without causing them to cramp too much, which is one of the most common complications of dialysis," Avera Dr. Arvin Santos said.
If the machines withdraw too much fluid, patients can get dizzy and faint. There are also possible health problems for not taking off enough fluid.
"For example, if you don't take enough fluid off patients can go into the hospital with fluid in the lungs," Santos said.
Santos also says having the new outpatient dialysis center on Avera's main campus can be helpful to patients. It's located on the fourth floor of Plaza 3.
"Actually a few days ago there was a medical emergency, and we were able to transfer the patient immediately to the E.R.," Santos said.
Thankfully, Eulberg has been feeling great. He's hoping for a kidney transplant.
"I'm on the transplant list," Eulberg said.
But for now he's just thankful for a comfortable chair to sit in.
"You usually end up taking a nap, and before you know it, it's time to go again," Eulberg said.
Before the new center, Avera contracted with an independent company for outpatient dialysis.