Hi y'all,

Just picked this Kidney Month story up off the businesswire. :-)

Dialysis is Changing: New Treatment Options Offer Patients Greater Flexibility and Control over Lifestyle

Fresenius Medical Care's TOPs Sessions Provide Information to People Facing Dialysis


WALTHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--People who need dialysis have more options for treatment, including home and nocturnal programs that may allow for more flexible lifestyles.

During National Kidney Month in March, Fresenius Medical Care North America, operator of the nation’s leading network of dialysis clinics, encourages individuals with kidney disease who are facing dialysis to learn more about options for treatment by attending a free, educational Treatment Options Program (TOPs) session.

“When people understand all the different ways they can receive therapy, the choice usually becomes a function of their lifestyle,” said Joseph Pulliam, M.D., vice president, Medical Affairs for Home Therapies at Fresenius Medical Care. “We've seen that patients who are educated and informed before they select a treatment option are much more likely to choose home therapies.”

In fact, people who attended TOPs sessions are five times more likely to choose home dialysis treatments, according to patient data collected by Fresenius Medical Care. Since Fresenius Medical Care launched the TOPs sessions in 2007, more than 20,000 people have attended.

TOPs sessions are hosted at least once a month by Fresenius Medical Care within every area of the company’s nationwide clinical network, and provide valuable information to patients who need dialysis, as well as people in at-risk groups for chronic kidney disease. This includes people with diabetes or high blood pressure, senior citizens and certain ethnic minorities, including African Americans, Asians, Hispanics and Native Americans.

To find an upcoming TOPs session near you, call toll-free at 1-866-4-DIALYSIS (1-866-434-2597), or visit the company's website at www.ultracare-dialysis.com (in English and Spanish).

During TOPs sessions, people facing dialysis can learn about the benefits and limitations of the available options for dialysis, and find one that best suits their health and lifestyle needs. TOPs session attendees will also learn from healthcare professionals about kidney health and treatment recommendations for all stages of chronic kidney disease, and they can find other resources, information, and support that are available.

Fresenius Medical Care offers four different types of treatments: in-center hemodialysis, in-center nocturnal hemodialysis, home hemodialysis, and peritoneal dialysis at home. Fresenius’ latest innovation, the Liberty Cycler, is the latest in home dialysis technology for automated peritoneal dialysis (APD), and was designed to allow patients to administer their own treatments while they sleep.

Dialysis is a life-sustaining process that cleans waste products from the blood, removes extra fluids, and controls the body’s chemistry when a person’s kidneys fail. Dialysis patients typically require treatment on an ongoing basis unless they receive a kidney transplant.

About Fresenius Medical Care North America

Fresenius Medical Care North America is a subsidiary of Fresenius Medical Care AG & Co. KGaA, the world's largest integrated provider of products and services for individuals undergoing dialysis because of chronic kidney failure, a condition that affects more than 1,600,000 individuals worldwide. Through its network of 2,388 dialysis clinics in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific and Africa, Fresenius Medical Care provides dialysis treatment to approximately 184,080 patients around the globe. Fresenius Medical Care is also the world's leading provider of dialysis products such as hemodialysis machines, dialyzers and related disposable products. Fresenius Medical Care is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (FME, FME3) and the New York Stock Exchange (FMS, FMS-p).

For more information about Fresenius Medical Care's U.S. network of more than 1,700 dialysis facilities, visit the Company's website at www.ultracare-dialysis.com (in English and Spanish). For more information about Fresenius Medical Care, visit the Company’s websites: www.fmcna.com or www.fmc-ag.com.