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dialysate heaters

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 2:20 am
by Bruce
Is there a better way of heating the dialysis solution than using a heating pad? Any information welcome. Thanks. Bruce

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 3:32 am
by Anne in Va
Hi Bruce,

Congratulations on your first day of PD training. I'm glad it went so well for you. About heating the bags. You can use a microwave, then just turn the bag around in your hands to make sure the solution is well mixed. I'm afraid I cannot give you an idea of the time to heat a bag since I rarely used that method. I'm sure someone else can give you an idea of the time. What I preferred to do was use a large sized cooler. I would put two bags on the bottom, side by side. Then I would put the heating pad on top set on low. I would then add either one or two bags on top of the heating pad, again side by side. When it was time for an exchange, I would remove one of the bottom bags. Move one of the top bags to the bottom then add a fresh bag on top. This way my bags were always warm and ready. If I found a problem with a bag, then I could discard it and another was always ready to go. If I wanted to go somewhere and needed to do an exchange while I was out, I could quickly put a warm bag in a small cooler and take it with me with very little effort. Believe me - I believe in very little effort!

Hope this has been of some help.


Heating PD bags

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 7:55 am
by R30
Hi Mike
With regard to Anne's posting, I was informed by my hospital (and the company that deliver my PD solution) that bags should NEVER be heated in a microwave, as there is a risk of them melting.
I have been given a bag heater by my hospital and this heats the bags to the correct temperature so I don't feel the solution going in. Personally I have also heated bags in sunny weather on the dashboard of the car when I've had to dialyse away from home (recently in a field by the sea!)
If you have an airing cupboard, you can store a couple of bags in there on rotation - this is also something I do just in case of a power cut.
Hope this helps.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 9:02 am
by Judith
When going out, I used to wrap the bag in a towel and place it in a coolbag with a hot water bottle. I have also wrapped the bag in a towel and placed it on a warm radiator.

Good luck!

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 12:05 pm
by wing
I have to say that I too was advised by my renal nurse, NEVER to use a microwave for warming up the fluid.
The reasons given to me were, the bags melting, as mentioned before, and that the excess heat also plays havoc with the sugar solution and can cause the sugars to crystalise.
I always keep 2 bags in the warmer lying side by side (rather than 1 lenghways on the heating pad), so there is always a choice of 2 when it comes to an exchange. Being a smart alec, I also always end the session by preparing everything ready for the next exchange!

microwave ovens

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 12:31 pm
by Anne in Va
I know there is some contradictory information regarding microwave use. This problem is basically in the past. The older ovens were not consistant in heating and had problems with hot spots. Todays ovens are much more efficient and do not have the same problems. My hospital unit, staffed by two experienced nurses who have been teaching and caring for patients for decades use this method to heat bags. When I had a doctor's visit, I would usually do an exchange there using the microwave. The problem arises when someone attempts to heat a bag in an old microwave, or heats it too long. This is why some companies recommend not using microwaves as Ruth says. Remember, you basically need only to take the chill off the fluid.

You also need to be careful when heating a bag on a car window ledge not to leave it too long in direct sunlight. If it overheats, the solution starts to go through changes and that bag, even after cooling, should not be used. I had this happen to me in my early experimental days. Sometimes, in really hot days, when I had been out in the sun, I would just use a cold bag. It felt so good being cooled from the inside out! Try this at home first. Some people cannot tolerate a cold bag.

Like I said before, I prefer the easy way. For me that is having several bags in a cooler and being able to rotate them. There are bag heaters for sale on some sites. I think "Stickman" has some.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 10:24 pm
by Rachel in NY
Another note about microwaving heating.. I haven't done pd - but i've come across this on some board or another. With some microwaves, especiall those that d on't rotate - it can cause uneven heat distribution. WHen that happens, you have a bag, with 'hotspots'. those hotspots are dangerous. Always something to keep in mind - if you use a microwave - go in short bursts - and then SHAKE THE BAG gently, not violently, to distribute the warmth evenly. if you feel its not warm enough, put it in again for a short bit, and then shake..etc - till its the proper temp. Don't risk overheating, bc you can have the hotspots, as well as something the others have posted - that excessive heating can cause the solution to undergo changes in its chemical structure. You don't want to have to deal with that.

Good luck.


warming PD bags

PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2004 10:11 am
by amanda in CA
Hi, my dialysis unit suggested heating in the microwave but I was concerned about possible release of plastisizers from the plastic into the solution. I contacted Baxter who categorically stated that a microwave should not be used but refused to comment on release of plasticizers. I now use a cycler anyway so that heats the fluid for me, but when I dialysed 11 years ago before my transplant, I purchased a custom-built bag warmer so that the bag was heated to the correct temperature. I don't like using a heat-pad since they are not intended to be left on unattended because of the risk of fire. I too have used a cold bag on occasion and this can be uncomfortable unless you do a slow fill. Amanda

Re: dialysate heaters

PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:47 pm
by Jane Simmons
Hey Bruce, my uncle goes for dialysis three times a week. I am not sure what they use but personally I find the PureRelief XL - King Size Heating Pad with Fast-Heating Technology to work well when I have cramping pains.