On Friday I visited the Renal Unit at the Inverclyde Royal Hospital thanks to the British Kidney Patient Association. I was shown round by Ewen MacLean who is himself on the kidney transplant waiting list and using a dialysis machine daily at home.
Currently there are approximately 65,000 people in the UK requiring Renal Replacement Therapy such as dialysis or transplant. Further to this it is suggested that 2 million people are on the Chronic Kidney Disease spectrum, however most will never require dialysis.
The work being done in the IRH Renal Unit is incredible, the nurses run a very tight ship, seeing 65 patients a week is not an easy task.
During the visit I had my eyes opened to the reality of receiving dialysis. It becomes a very large part of your life, having to attend hospital three times a week for up to five hours at a time.
It is also sometimes necessary to restrict your liquid intake to 1ltr throughout the day. This may seem like a reasonable amount but when you consider a handful of grapes would be 10% of your daily allowance or a cup of tea being ¾ it quickly fills up.
Pictured with Eric Butt, Alison Hyslop, Ewen MacLean and Mira Cox