3 types of vascular access ports used in hemodialysis

Hemodialysis refers to a method for cleaning the blood. Dialysis functions to removemetabloic waste products such as potassium, urea from the blood during renal failure. Additionally, dialysis may be used to remove other chemical toxins from the bloodstream in cases of overdose.

In the case of renal failure, patients may undergo dialysis treatments three times a week for 3 to 4 hours.

Hemodialysis requires a vascular access site. This is an arterial and venous site on your body from which your blood is removed and returned after it is filtered by the dialysis machine.

Three major forms of vascular access are used: 

  • The native arteriovenous fistula


  • The synthetic arteriovenous graft (expanded polytetrafluoroethylene)


  • The cuffed, tunneled central venous catheter


Cheung, Alfred, K, Li, Li, Terry, Christi, M, and Shiu, Yan-Ting, E. 2008. Neointimal hyperplasia associated with synthetic hemodialysis grafts. Kidney International. 74 (10) 1247-1261.


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