Hello! My name is Genna and today I am going to be asking the founder of PD pouch some questions. First a little background knowledge on Geoff, he is a 61-year-old male living in South Florida. He is a veteran and been on the sales side of the food industry for over 35 years. Geoff lives a very active lifestyle when he can. He has been on peritoneal dialysis (PD) for a little over a year now due to his autoimmune disease putting him into stage 5-kidney failure.
What is PD (peritoneal dialysis)?
PD is a home dialysis in which the patient instills fluid into there peritoneal space via a machine daily. The machine instills solution into the cavity and removes it after a period of dwell time in the abdomen. The purpose is to remove the toxins from your blood that is normally removed by your kidneys.
Why did you think that was a better option for you?
It’s really the better of two options because you get todo it in your home vs. going to some clinic everyday. It was our personal preference to still be able to live the kind of lifestyle I wanted to. There is nothing fun or convenient about dialysis in general but this just happened to be what was best for me
How was your experience at first?
Miserable. Pain. Uncertainty. Honestly figuring out if I could even do it or not. Trying to overcome the obstacles was definitely just as big as a struggle as it was finding about the kidney failure. Like every other disease there is big drawbacks and if you want to live you have to play the game.
How do you deal with it?
Frankly, like a warrior. This is a battle and in a battle you either lead follow or get out of the way. I am leading my battle everyday until I win. I deal with it by being extremely involved in my own care and not putting it off on to others. Its already hard enough on your family, so I try my best todo everything that I still can on my own. My wife has been a critical care nurse for 40 years and I still hook up my own machine every night and administer my own solution.
What lead you to finding an alternative?
You have to think out of the box, but there are certain things that will make you more comfortable which lead me to getting rid of the belt and designing the pouch. The belt to me was nothing short of a torture devise. Itchy, sweaty, bulky and wouldn’t stay in the place. Those alone would make it ineffective in itself but it also irritates the site, which played a huge roll into finding a different solution.
What is the PD Pouch?
The PD pouch is a far better alternate to the belt. As it is self-contained, made of a very high quality material and professionally manufacture. The most unique thing about it is the passive security system that allows it to break free if caught on something. It is also secured to your undergarment giving you the feeling that it is not even there. No tape, no rubbing. The site stays clean, dry, and not irritated. This lessons the chance of infection. It is also very discrete giving you the confidence to go about your everyday life without feeling self conscious, even when swimming.
How has the Pouch changed your experience?
Because of the pouch, there are periods that I forget the catheter is there when I am doing the things I love like fishing or bike riding. Overall it has made my body more comfortable as well as my mental image of myself and the fear of the belt showing around new people.
Do you have any tips for others in this position?
Yes, just remember this isn’t for the weak. You have to have a strong will and staying positive is very important. You have to want to live and a drive todo it. Just because someone tells you that you cant, don’t believe them. It’s okay to get down every once in a while but I find it very important to have a support system to help me and get me back on track. I also find great conformant in my dogs that have helped me a lot throughout this process. Also it is very important to find what works for you. One of my biggest struggles was the belt. I can honestly say the PD pouch has really changed dialysis for me.
Do you have anything else to add?
Yeah, if your journey includes you getting new kidney I hope this pouch is the last one you will ever need.