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Incorrect Dialyzer

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Incorrect Dialyzer or Dialyzing Solution

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Fact Source

The fluid used for hemodialysis may contain DNA fragments from bacteria, which could be harmful for patient outcomes. DNA fragments from bacteria, containing the nonmethylated CpG motif, can trigger inflammation through the monocyte and lymphocyte Toll-like receptor 9, and these DNA fragments have been observed in dialysate. The fragments may transfer across the dialyzer into the patient's bloodstream during hemodialysis treatment.

Handelman GJ, Megdal PA, Handelman SK. Bacterial DNA in water and dialysate: detection and significance for patient outcomes. Blood Purif. 2009;27(1):81-5. Epub 2009 Jan 23.


Nearly two-thirds of professionals report that the wrong dialyzing solution has been set-up for a patient within the past three months.

Health and Safety Survey to Improve Patient Safety in End Stage Renal Disease, page 18


Patients who are involved in their dialysis care are less likely to indicate that they have had the wrong dialyzing set up for their treatment than those who are uninvolved in their care (80% vs. 46%, respectively). Thus increasing patient involvement in their dialysis care may provide an approach to safeguard against solution errors.

Health and Safety Survey to Improve Patient Safety in End Stage Renal Disease, page 18 


Based on a confidential Network Chairman Patient Safety Study (2007) with both patient and professional responses, 17% patients reported problems with settings on their dialysis machine, 3% had the wrong dialyzer set up for treatment and 2% had the wrong dialyzing solution set up. 

Health and Safety Survey to Improve Patient Safety in End Stage Renal Disease, page 10