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Dialysis

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Dialysis Fistulogram

Description

A fistulogram is an x-ray procedure which allows your doctor to view the blood flow in your fistula (connection between an artery and a vein made to enlarge the vein).

Purpose

The procedure can give us an idea if the fistula is blocked or narrowed (stenosis).

How Should I Prepare?

Arrange for a responsible adult to accompany you to your appointment, stay during your procedure and drive you home. This allows us to administer medications to make you comfortable during the procedure.

Procedure

Your access site will be cleaned and draped with sterile sheets and your access point will be numbed.  The physician will place a small catheter in your fistula/graft through which x-ray dye will be injected.  X-rays are taken of your fistula/graft. If an area of abnormal narrowing is seen, we will usually treat it by placing a small balloon in the fistula/graft and stretching the narrowed area open (angioplasty).

Aftercare

After your procedure:

  • If you received medication, for 24 hours: don’t drive, or use heavy machinery, don’t make any legal or financial decisions, don’t sign any important papers, don’t drink alcohol.
  • Do not lift anything heavier than a 2-liter bottle of soda, don’t wear clothing that will press against your wound. After 24 hours post-procedure you can return to usual activities.
  • Relax–don’t do anything stressful.
  • You may eat and drink as usual.

FAQs

Will I feel any pain? 

You may have mild tenderness, swelling, and bruising at your puncture site.  This is normal.

Will I have stitches?  If so, when will they be removed? 

You may have stitches; however, the majority of patients do not require stitches. If you do, you will have to return to our center to have them removed.

What should I watch for post-procedure? 

  • Any redness or swelling around the puncture site
  • Warmth around the puncture site
  • Drainage from the puncture site
  • Lack of pulse or weak pulse in the fistula/graft