Nephrologists diagnose and treat a wide array of disorders of the kidneys and related metabolic (chemical processes that are necessary for the maintenance of life) and hematologic (blood-related) diseases.
Your care team
Nephrologists on staff at Ingalls collaborate with experienced nurses and specialists throughout the hospital, including primary care physicians, dietitians and social workers.
To find a doctor call Ingalls Care Connection at 708.915.CARE (2273) or click here to search online.
Dialysis Access and Fistula Maintenance Services
Ingalls offers the area’s premier outpatient dialysis management services for individuals with chronic kidney disease and end-stage renal disease. At Ingalls, we understand that your access is your lifeline. That’s why our team of highly skilled interventional radiologists is focused on achieving optimal patient outcomes. Through the use of proven, safe and timely access procedures, we are committed to providing a functioning access point to every patient that we treat.
Experts at Vascular Access and Access Preservation
As interventional radiologists, we are uniquely skilled at working with the vascular system. In fact, interventional radiologists pioneered minimally invasive modern medicine as the inventors of angioplasty and the catheter-delivered stent. Today, many conditions that once required surgery can be treated non-surgically by interventional radiologists, resulting in less risk, pain and recovery time.
So what does that mean for you? That means we get it right the first time – regardless of how challenging your access needs are. We have the most sophisticated tools and imaging equipment available right here when we need it. For added patient convenience, we offer on-call service and can usually schedule access procedures within 24 hours.
At Ingalls, interventional radiologists work directly with your nephrologist and vascular surgeon to ensure the best possible care. Procedures are performed on an outpatient basis in most cases, and require only a few hours of your time. Our new outpatient holding area will make your visit quicker and easier, allowing direct in–and-out access without unnecessary waits in other hospital areas. Results are sent to your doctor and dialysis center within 24 hours of your procedure.
Our complete dialysis access services Include:
- Vessel Mapping. Contrast dye is injected into a small IV in the hand to show precisely where your veins are. Vessel mapping helps us choose the best location for a fistula or graft. This may also be done with ultrasound, avoiding any needle sticks.
- Fistulagram. Contrast dye is injected through a needle puncture in the vascular access to determine if there is any narrowing within the fistula or graft, or within any accessory veins or arteries.
- Angioplasty. If the fistulagram confirms a blockage or narrowing, an angioplasty balloon is inserted into the narrowed blood vessel. The balloon is inflated to dilate the vessel to improve blood flow.
- Thrombolysis (De-clot). Fistulas and grafts can become clotted for various reasons. Thrombolysis involves the use of a special catheter to remove a clot from an affected fistula or graft. If the clotting is caused by a narrowing in the vein, an angioplasty will be done during the de-clot procedure.
- Tunneled Catheter Placement for Hemodialysis. A temporary or permanent catheter is placed in the chest or neck until a fistula or graft is ready to use (for new dialysis patients). Creative vascular access can be utilized for patients with multiple blocked veins.
- Access Management Services. Using the latest imaging, diagnostic, and interventional services and education, interventional radiologists partner with you and your nephrologists to develop a plan of care that manages your complete access needs. We can put you on a schedule to monitor your access and intervene as needed. Our goal is to maintain, preserve and maximize the life of your access without the need for avoidable hospitalizations.
For more information about complete Dialysis Access Services at Ingalls, please call Interventional Radiology at 708-915-5614.
Ingalls also features a six-patient dedicated inpatient dialysis unit for patients who require treatment for acute or chronic renal failure while in the hospital.