Tag Archives: dialysis

Belding Scribner and his arteriovenous Teflon shunt

Belding Scribner. Photo by Kay Rodriguez. From University of Washington School of Medicine Online News Archive. Without Belding Scribner maintenance dialysis might have never happened. Although by 1960 the technology of hemodialysis had become quite advanced, and several types of dialyzers, notably the Kolff Twin Coil, had been successfully used, long-term access to the vascular system […]

Satoru Nakamoto

Of all the pioneers who made hemodialysis a reality, Satoru Nakamoto was the most humble and unassuming. He died in 2020 at the age of 92, almost forgotten by a generation that often takes the technical advances of dialysis for granted and rarely looks back on the people who made it possible. I had the […]

Stanley Shaldon as I knew him

Stanley Shaldon. Photo by the author. Stanley Shaldon belonged to that first generation of nephrologists who made dialysis available at a time when uremia was a sentence of death. He was one of the bright young registrars whom Professor Sheila Sherlock took with her from the Royal Postgraduate Medical School at Hammersmith to the Royal […]

Grit

Romalyn Ante Wolverhampton, England   My mother is right—my brother’s blood is getting dirtier. A nurse like me, she had read the result of his glomerular filtration rate, a test that measures how well the kidneys clean the blood. It had dropped below 15, an indication that his chronic renal failure was reaching its end […]

Saul Bellow visits a dialysis unit

The Dean’s December, published in 1982, is a highly autobiographical book written by Nobel Prize winner Saul Bellow.1 It is about the experiences of a university Dean and is divided into two episodes.2 The first takes place in Bucharest, where the Dean visits his mother-in-law, once a prominent but now politically disgraced party member lying […]

Nils Alwall – one of the founding fathers of nephrology

Mårten Segelmark Lund, Sweden   Figure 1. Nils Alwall in 1965 with one of the first long-time survivors. (Picture archive of the South Swedish Society for History of Medicine) More than two million people suffering from kidney failure are currently being kept alive by dialysis. But when Nils Alwall was a young doctor eighty years […]

Scarred for life

Shanda McCutcheon Calgary, Alberta, Canada   Three Months Post Donation, Michael, his wife Rebecca and their two youngest children with Shanda (far right) Source: Personal photograph of author Most mornings I wake and it does not seem like it happened at all. Still half asleep, I step under the cascading waters of a warm shower […]

Mrs. M’s refusal

Ladan Golestaneh Bronx, NY, USA   My role as a physician includes foregoing a prescriptive approach to some patients in favor of a supportive one. Yielding to a belief system that does not fit the structure of my many years of training feels like a personal failure. But sometimes I know I have to listen […]

History of nephrology: modern era

George Dunea Chicago, Illinois, USA   Twentieth century Three major developments—renal biopsy, dialysis, and transplantation—revolutionized nephrology in the second half of the 20th century. Renal biopsy transformed the diagnostic approach to renal disease from a clinical methodology to one based on morphological analysis. Presently over one million patients with renal failure are maintained by dialysis […]