For those of you using the Fresenius, what dialyzer are you using. I have recently discovered that Fresenius has an Optiflux dialyzer that is apparently much better than the older F70. I have asked about switching as many centers have totally discontinued using the F70’s (ironically even the incenter part of my unit), but am having trouble getting an answer about using it, one excuse being they are not sure it is available for home patients, which makes no sense.
I am a large patient and feel that the Optiflux 200 is “made” for me, just curious if any of you started out or have switched to the Optiflux.
That dialyzer is expensive…over $30. each…made exclusively for one time use only, however, many clinics can’t afford to just use it once, so most re-use theirs. I did use optiflux a few times and must say it’s a nice dialyzer, less side effects and reactions compared to the standard F80s’ and such…depending the size you use affects cost. An example would be the F7 would cost from $8-10. each…F8 prolly around $14.-18. each…as the size goes up the cost also goes up…If you can forkmout or maybe tell the clinic to let you try it for one month under your expense see what they say…but I think the main goal for the clinic is to save money and keep costs down…
That dialyzer is expensive…over $30. each…made exclusively for one time use only, however, many clinics can’t afford to just use it once, so most re-use theirs. I did use optiflux a few times and must say it’s a nice dialyzer, less side effects and reactions compared to the standard F80s’ and such…depending the size you use affects cost. An example would be the F7 would cost from $8-10. each…F8 prolly around $14.-18. each…as the size goes up the cost also goes up…If you can forkmout or maybe tell the clinic to let you try it for one month under your expense see what they say…but I think the main goal for the clinic is to save money and keep costs down…[/quote]
Isn’t it illegal to allow patients to buy their own dialyzers?
I use an Optiflux 160. I consistently get a Kt/v of at least 1.8. Seems to do the job. My unit is non-reuse, so apparantly it is affordable as well. Can tell you not all dialyzers deliver as I have been on other models that did not clear as well.
Funny, I was told the cost was quite similar to the F70 and also that all of their in clinic patients get the OptifluxNR, so non-reuse. Cost doesn’t appear to be a factor unless my information is incorrect.
And Gus, I think it is legal for a patient to buy them, but they need a “prescription”. Think about it, if you don’t have any insurance and are paying for dialysis out of pocket and you are a home patient, you are buying the supplies including the dialyzer.
I think the issue of legality of a patient buying his/her dialyzer occurs if the patient has Medicare. Under the Medicare composite rate (Method I) or the Method II rate that Medicare pays for dialysis when the patient contracts directly with a supply company, the dialysis clinic or supply company is supposed to provide the dialyzer. I think it could be considered Medicare fraud to charge a patient for something you’re supposed to supply for the rate Medicare pays and that you’ve agreed to accept (called assignment of Medicare benefits).
I believe most if not all dialyzers say on the packaging that they are for single use but a procedure of reuse was developed and approved to keep the cost per use down while protecting patient safety. I have heard of home patients reusing dialyzers. From what I’ve heard, unless the machine can disinfect the dialyzer and lines on the machine like Aksys’ PHD machine, reuse in the home setting can be a hassle. It would be interesting to hear from any of you on this board about your experience, if any, reusing dialyzers in the home setting.
Anyway, the many years I’ve dialyzed and my record shows…reusing the dialyzer has been making me sick, and I mean sick…I worked and fought hard to get them not to re-use but they biggest worry was cost…simply they didn’t want to buy it again. Though they claimed they were giving me a new dialyzer they weren’t, so re-using the dialyzer at home in the manner Aksys machine did really interest me so much but once I found out about NxStage it just pulled me that way. If I had the opportunity to try Aksys for a month in clinic or even at home I’d really would wanna try it and see and compare how I feel between both machines…
yes, the F180 is optiflux. My husband used re-usable in clinic for awhile – a fresenius unit – but then they switched some time ago saying that the manufacture of the dialyzer had become so streamlined and widespread that it had become a lot more affordable to go to non-reuse.
Thanks for telling me that the link didn’t work. I edited my posting and took out the period so now you can click on it and (hopefully) get the article I meant people to know about.
You’re right, Fresenius clinics don’t reuse dialyzers any more. Fresenius has dialysis clinics and makes dialyzers that their clinics and other clinics buy. If their clinics can purchase the dialyzers from the parent company at a reasonable price, it probably isn’t cost effective for Fresenius to reuse dialyzers. Reuse is not without its own costs – reuse equipment, supplies, reuse tech, equipment to monitor air quality, venting, extra water, etc. And this doesn’t take into account the symptoms that some patients have with reused dialyzers.
The FDA has approved the F80 (a high flux dialyzer) for use in the Aksys machine that heat disinfects. I’ve heard that this dialyzer has good adequacy results for patients, including a 325 pound male. Studies show that most of the urea is removed during the first couple of hours of dialysis, so it makes sense that shorter, more frequent dialysis treatments would produce excellent adequacy results.
My husband Ralph is nocturnal and they switched dialyizers a couple of months ago to the Gambro Polyflux 140H. Ralph is a big guy and this one works really well.
Also when we were in Myrtle Beach last March the Unit we were at gave us an Optiflux 180 ( he was using a 160 at home) what a difference the 180 made, especially while on vacation.
By the way, I forgot to mention in my previous post that I was on an Optiflux dialyzer the first year. It made me itch, which is why I’m on the e-beam sterilized F70Nre now. I can’t say I noticed anything at all after the switch, except that the itching stopped.