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Reginald Hayes, a 50-year-old construction worker from Paducah, Kentucky, is changing what it means to live with a chronic disease.
Diagnosed with kidney failure in 2017, Reginald has continued to put in 12-hour days as a construction worker. Being able to perform his own dialysis treatment for kidney failure at home allows Reginald to balance the life-sustaining treatment with his work loading building materials, demolishing large structures and operating heavy machinery.
“Home therapy is the best thing to happen to me since being diagnosed,” said Reginald. “I feel a lot better about myself, I’m no longer tired and I have all of my strength back. I feel like I can do anything.”
Most mornings Reginald hooks himself up to his NxStage machine for hemodialysis treatment in the comfort of his own home. Well before his shift begins, the machine goes to work, ridding his body of unwanted toxins, waste products and excess fluids by filtering his blood.
The NxStage System One is the first and only truly portable hemodialysis system cleared for home use in the United States, including solo hemodialysis during waking hours, and nocturnal hemodialysis, while both the patient and care partner sleep. It was specifically designed for patients to use in their homes and is small enough to allow patients to travel and bring their treatment supplies with them.
Many experts agree that home dialysis — either peritoneal or hemodialysis — is the best option for treating kidney failure whenever possible. That’s because choosing home dialysis can mean greater scheduling flexibility, fewer food restrictions and better outcomes.
Reginald has tried in-center treatments, but like many others, found that home was a better fit for his lifestyle. Through collaboration among the in-center and home therapy teams, Reginald became the first solo home patient at his local Fresenius Kidney Care facility.
“He was determined to do home treatments and did everything that was asked of him to make it happen,” said Fresenius Kidney Care Home Therapies Program Manager Tammy Mitchell. “We may have helped him get there but he deserves all the credit for his success.”
In addition to training and education, he received one-on-one support from Tammy throughout the process.
“It’s been great to see how successful Reginald has been on solo home. He’s shown it can be done and has opened the door for more people to be considered,” she said.