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Fresenius Kidney Care to open North Fort Myers location

By Staff | Mar 7, 2019

Fresenius Kidney Care is opening a new location in North Fort Myers to help Southwest Floridians battle kidney disease.

And they want the public to know they’re here to help.

On March 14, the dialysis facility will host an open house from 2 to 6 p.m. at Fresenius Kidney Care North Fort Myers, 15991 North Cleveland Avenue.

One in seven adults has chronic kidney disease (CKD) and the symptoms usually occur late, after the condition has progressed. Many won’t detect the condition until they’ve lost more than 90 percent of their kidney function.

Fresenius Kidney Care in-center manager, Jessica Newman, says the options are to do a kidney transplant or dialysis.

In Florida, there are nearly 30,500 patients on dialysis, a treatment for kidney failure that filters the blood and helps rid the body of unwanted toxins, waste products and excess fluids.

There are also currently 468,000 people in the U.S. who depend on dialysis as a life-sustaining treatment.

That’s where Fresenius Kidney Care comes in. A division of Fresenius Medical Care North America (FMCNA), Fresenius Kidney Care provides dialysis treatment and support services to more than 190,000 people with kidney disease each year, whether it’s in their own homes or at more than 2,400 Fresenius Kidney Care facilities around the country.

The worldwide leader in the treatment of renal disease and an innovative leader in kidney disease research is opening a new facility in Lee County, and they want the public to know they’re a resource.

“We want the community to know we are there to help them and support them and know we are here,” Newman said.

Those who attend the open house will be able to meet the treatment team and see the treatment rooms and learn about the two types of dialysis, in-center and at-home.

There are 17 in-center stations and two home training rooms.

Attendees will learn about other services the center offers including hemodialysis travel services and ongoing educational programs

People will also learn how FreseniusRx renal-trained pharmacists can help dialysis patients manage their medications.

The free event is also an opportunity to educate Southwest Florida residents about the disease, which is normally caused by high blood pressure and diabetes.

“Those two illnesses are common with aging people,” said home therapy manager, Belinda Roman.

More than 660,000 Americans live with end stage renal disease, or kidney failure, which requires either a transplant or dialysis to remove waste from the blood, maintain safe levels of potassium and sodium and control blood pressure.

When your kidneys fail, it may become difficult for your body to clean your blood and keep your system chemically balanced. Dialysis can take the place of some kidney function. Along with proper care and medication, it could help people live longer.

Newman said it’s important for patients with diabetes or hypertension to play an active role in their care and to make sure they do what their doctors are prescribing.

Roman said maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle can help, too.

In-center hemodialysis provides patients the reassurance of staff-assisted treatment in one place.

Roman said the doctor will make the decision if a patient needs in-center or at-home therapy.

At-home peritoneal dialysis gives patients more independence. It’s also more convenient and it means the patient won’t have to spend up to 12 hours a week in a center to receive their life-sustaining care.

Newman and Roman agree that at-home dialysis can provide the patient with more flexibility and independence, especially if they are working or travelling.

Roman said they train for as long as it takes for the patient to be confident with it going home.

In-center hemodialysis occurs at end stage renal disease, which is also called stage-five chronic kidney disease. Blood is filtered outside the body through a dialyzer or “artificial kidney,” which removes unwanted waste, toxins and excess fluids.

Depending on the treatment schedule the doctor prescribes, patients typically visit the center three times a week for about three to five hours each visit.

At-home dialysis uses the body’s blood vessels in the lining of the abdomen. This acts as the body’s natural filter, along with a solution called dialysate. Together they filter the blood via a peritoneal catheter. This method means blood never leaves the body. It can be done with a machine or manually at home, at work, or while traveling.

Fresenius Kidney Care’s dedicated teams help address the physical and emotional aspects of kidney disease through personalized care, education and lifestyle support services

The clinic can treat a maximum of 104 patients a week. This enables Fresenius Kidney Care’s local team of expert medical professionals to better serve the Lee County area’s growing dialysis community.

“We want to let people know that Fresenius is here so hopefully they don’t need dialysis,” Newman said. “Fresenius has more than 140 clinics throughout Florida so we are definitely present and available for them no matter where they are.”