Drs. Rakesh Navuluri, Osman Ahmed, and Mary Hammes (Nephrology) performed the first non-surgical arteriovenous fistula creation at UCM using a new FDA approved device called WavelinQ™. The procedure allows patients with kidney failure to avoid surgery prior to receiving hemodialysis.
Kidneys remove waste and extra water from the blood. When patients suffer from kidney failure, they must undergo regular hemodialysis to filter their blood. In order to prepare for dialysis, a patient must undergo surgery to have a dialysis fistula created. A fistula connects a vein to an artery to maximize blood flow for the dialysis treatments. With traditional surgery this is accomplished by sewing an artery and vein together.
The WavelinQ™ device works by using magnets to align an artery and vein together and a 1 second pulse of radiofrequency energy to create a small channel between the artery and vein. Fistulas can now be created through two pinholes and without the need for an incision. In addition to the fact that it is minimally invasive, early studies indicate that endovascular AV fistula creation has better outcomes compared with surgery. Fistulas created with this new technique require fewer follow up procedures and can be used for dialysis sooner than surgically placed AV fistulas. It is also a great option for patients who are hesitant about surgery.
To learn more about this procedure please call 773-702-6514 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Rakesh Navuluri.