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When an individual's kidney function is 20% or less, it is really important to start thinking about the need for renal replacement therapy (transplantation and/or dialysis). Another option to consider is to not have any treatment at all - this is called conservative care. 

All these options are explained in much more detail below. Please click on the green arrow which will take you to a separate page to read more.

Cartoon Kidneys


Having a kidney transplant is the best way to replace lost kidney function, however, not all will be suitable for this treatment. This may be due to reasons out of individual's control but for many others this is often down to lifestyle choices.

Cartoon Kidneys

Peritoneal Dialysis

Peritoneal dialysis is a more home-based therapy. It is done independently by yourself and can be carried out in most places (at work, watching television, in the car!). This type of treatment requires good self-motivation.

Cartoon Kidneys


Haemodialysis is the most common method used to treat end stage renal failure. Most patients dialyse 3 times a week for between 3.5-4 hours a session. Haemodialysis can also be carried out in your own home by you and a carer if you meet certain criteria and commit to extensive training.

Cartoon Kidneys

Conservative Care

The point of doing dialysis is to feel better and to live longer. But if somebody is very frail and perhaps has other problems, doing dialysis might not achieve this. Conservative care is an option to consider in this case. It does not mean that we stop providing care for you.

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