Exploring patients' experiences of the impact of dialysis therapies on quality of life and wellbeing

Joe Antoun, Daniel J. Brown, Daniel J. W. Jones, Beth G. Clarkson, Anthony I. Shepherd, Nicholas C. Sangala, Robert J. Lewis, Melitta A. McNarry, Kelly A. Mackintosh, Laura Mason, Jo Corbett, Zoe L. Saynor

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Background - When people with chronic kidney disease reach kidney failure, renal replacement therapy is usually required to improve symptoms and maintain life. Although in-centre haemodialysis is most commonly used for this purpose, other forms of dialysis are available, including home haemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis.

Objectives - We aimed to explore the experiences of adults living with chronic kidney disease who were either approaching the need for dialysis or had reached kidney failure and were receiving a form of dialysis. In particular, we explored how different forms of dialysis affect their quality of life, wellbeing, and physical activity.

Methods - Individual semistructured interviews were conducted with 40 adults with kidney failure, comprising four groups (n = 10 each): those receiving in-centre haemodialysis, home haemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, or predialysis. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, thematically analysed, and then composite vignettes were subsequently developed to present a rich narrative of the collective experiences of each group.

Findings - Compared with adults who were predialysis, quality of life and wellbeing improved upon initiation of their home haemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis. Conversely, minimal improvement was perceived by those receiving in-centre haemodialysis. Low physical activity was reported across all four groups, although those receiving home haemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis reported a greater desire and ability to be physically active than those in-centre.

Conclusion - These findings highlight that dialysis modalities not requiring regular hospital attendance (i.e., home haemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis) improve independence, quality of life, wellbeing, and can facilitate a more physically active lifestyle.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-23
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Renal Care
Issue number1
Early online date28 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2023


  • home haemodialysis
  • patient experience
  • quality of Life
  • peritoneal dialysis


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