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Fistula Salvaging (reopening) in Dialysis patients


What is fistula salvaging?

An AV (arteriovenous) fistula is the best means of access to the blood stream for long-term haemodialysis.

It is created by connecting an artery to a vein, usually in your wrist or upper arm, and it helps to transfer blood into the dialysis machine and back again during haemodialysis

Over timefistula ages, and clots can form decreasing the blood flow through it and thus the effectiveness of dialysis.

Clots can sometimes block a fistula completely. It is important to restore the blood flow through the fistula at an early stage so that the fistula continues to work well for dialysis.


  • Loss of bruit at the fistula site
  • Inadequate flow during dialysis


Physical examination reveals absence of bruit at the fistula site

  • ColourDoppler
  • Angiography


Interventional radiologist approaches the fistula through a small prick from vein of hand and then passes a small wire across the obstructed fistula subsequently dilates the blocked fistula with a balloon, thus opening the fistula