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                                                                                                        Upper arm
           Grafts are similar to AV fistulas. Unlike                                                  dialysis graft
        the fistula, which is created by the direct
        connection of the artery to the vein, the
        graft is formed by using a synthetic tube
        to connect the artery to the vein.
        Therefore, grafts are typically used when
        patients have small or weak veins that
        will not develop properly into a suitable
        fistula. Like a fistula, this type of access
        is usually implanted under the skin in
        your arm. A surgeon performs a brief
        procedure, in order to properly place the
           The graft is usually a soft, synthetic
        tube that connects to an artery at one
        end and a vein at the other. The tube
        acts like a natural vein, allowing blood to
        flow through it.
           Following the surgery, you may
        experience pain and swelling, in the area,
        over the graft for three or four weeks.
        You will be prescribed pain relief to take
        during this time. The arm should be kept
        elevated. After the swelling goes down,
        a graft can be used for haemodialysis.
        Grafts can be used repeatedly for needle
        insertion during dialysis treatment.

                                 PROS AND CONS OF A GRAFT FOR ACCESS
          PROS                                                                            CONS
          l  Can be readily implanted.                                         l Increased potential for clotting.
          l  Predictable performance.                                         l Increased potential for infection.
          l  Can be used faster than an AV fistula                   l Does not usually last as long as a fistula.
               (within 3 to 4 weeks).                                               l Steal Syndrome.

        P.14 Haemodialysis and Peritoneal Dialysis – A Guide for Patients
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