Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Patients with kidney failure to get a new lease on life

Date:
April 14, 2014
Source:
European Commission, CORDIS
Summary:
A European research consortium has been developing a wearable artificial kidney that would make it possible for dialysis patients to lead a more full and active life while adding another 10 to 16 years to their life expectancy.

The NEPHRON+ project is improving the lives of patients by developing a wearable artificial kidney device.
Credit: Nanodialysis

End stage kidney disease is a global public health problem with an estimated 2.4 million patients on dialysis. The number of new cases is rising (7-8% annually) due to population ageing and increased diabetes prevalence. The NEPHRON+ project is improving the lives of patients by developing a wearable artificial kidney device, enabled with information and communication technologies for remote monitoring. Chronic kidney disease will affect one in ten of us at some point in our lives. For those of us unlucky enough to suffer renal failure as a result, the health consequences can be disastrous.

Without treatment kidney failure is deadly. However, even the best treatments are not ideal. Patients have to be treated with a dialysis machine at home or in hospital, sometimes as often as once every four hours. Patients spend a large part of their lives connected to dialysis equipment. What's more, the life expectancy of a person in their 20s who has suffered kidney failure is just 20 years, unless they're lucky enough to receive a donated organ.

All this could change, however. An EU-funded research consortium has been developing a wearable artificial kidney that would make it possible for dialysis patients to lead a more full and active life while adding another 10 to 16 years to their life expectancy.

The future of wearable dialysis

The NEPHRON+ WAKD (Wearable Artificial Kidney Device) is currently undergoing animal trials and will have to pass several rounds of stringent tests in humans before it is ready to be used by all patients with kidney disease. However, the project has reached a stage where commercial partners are ready to take the technology to the next stage. With kidney failure rates on the rise and pressure on hospitals to find more cost effective and clinically effective treatments, the market for wearable dialysis devices could be worth as much as a €15 billion per year, according to Dr Leonidas Lymberopoulos, project coordinator.

The advantages of wearable dialysis

The NEPHRON+ system works like a conventional dialysis machine, taking the patient's blood and passes it through a number of filters, removing waste products that would be excreted in a healthy patient's urine and making sure that the patient's blood pressure stays at a safe level. The patient can see the monitored data via their smartphone. What's more, the data can be sent to the patient's specialist doctor, so that their condition can be monitored at all times. But the wearable device will reduce the chance that a patient has to go to hospital for emergency treatment as constant dialysis is much more effective than intermittent treatment.

Frank Simonis, technical manager of NEPHRON+ explains: "Continuous, 24/7 dialysis with a wearable device offers a smooth and uniform extraction of toxins over the day similar to the natural kidney. This improves the health condition tremendously and eliminates the 'after dialysis sickness syndrome' that many patients suffer from."

Dr Lymberopoulos suggests that the cost of caring for a patient with kidney disease will fall due to the reduction in the need for prescription medicine, nursing staff and installation costs. Cost savings in medical care are expected to €15.000-20.000/patient/year. With 340.000 patients in Europe this implies an annual saving of €5-7 billion.Most importantly, explains Ms Anastasia Garbi, former project leader, "the patient can now lead a more normal life, working and exercising without the regular long visits to the hemodialysis centers."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Commission, CORDIS. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Commission, CORDIS. "Patients with kidney failure to get a new lease on life." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 April 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140414123651.htm>.
European Commission, CORDIS. (2014, April 14). Patients with kidney failure to get a new lease on life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140414123651.htm
European Commission, CORDIS. "Patients with kidney failure to get a new lease on life." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140414123651.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Is your child ready? Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Issues Ebola Travel Restrictions, Are Visa Bans Next?

U.S. Issues Ebola Travel Restrictions, Are Visa Bans Next?

Newsy (Oct. 22, 2014) Now that the U.S. is restricting travel from West Africa, some are dropping questions about a travel ban and instead asking about visa bans. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
US to Track Everyone Coming from Ebola Nations

US to Track Everyone Coming from Ebola Nations

AP (Oct. 22, 2014) Stepping up their vigilance against Ebola, federal authorities said Wednesday that everyone traveling into the US from Ebola-stricken nations will be monitored for symptoms for 21 days. (Oct. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctors Help Paralysed Man Walk Again, Patient in Disbelief

Doctors Help Paralysed Man Walk Again, Patient in Disbelief

AFP (Oct. 22, 2014) Polish doctors describe how they helped a paralysed man walk again, with the patient in disbelief at the return of sensation to his legs. Duration: 1:04 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins