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Interventional Radiologist Dr. John Allen and his team at Advanced Radiology are utilizing a new technology to help patients with chronic kidney disease receive care more easily.

Chronic Kidney Disease (also known as End-Stage Renal Disease) occurs when the kidneys are no longer able to meet the body’s needs to filter wastes and excess fluids from the blood. When this occurs, dangerous levels of fluid, electrolytes and wastes can build up in the body, and patients need either dialysis or a kidney transplant to stay alive.

To start a patient on ‘hemodialysis,’ a physician first needs a way to access the bloodstream so the dialysis machine can ‘clean’ the patient’s blood and recirculate it through the body.

Previously this has been done with a minor surgery, typically in the patient’s arm. However, a new technology called The Ellipsys® Vascular Access System uses high-frequency ultrasound guidance to create a connection of the vein to the artery (known as a ‘percutaneous arteriovenous fistula’).

The process is primarily done using thermal energy, which has been successfully used in other vessel-sealing applications with results equal to or better than traditional suturing methods.

“This method is not only less-invasive—requiring less downtime and risk of complications for the patient—it is also less costly because of its nonsurgical nature,” said Dr. Allen.

Dr. Allen performed a successful placement of the Ellipsys® on October 15th at Kearney Regional Medical Center.

Advanced Radiology offers state-of-the-art Interventional and Diagnostic Radiology services across Nebraska, including: Bryan Medical Center East, Bryan Medical Center West, Kearney Regional Medical Center, Omaha Children’s Hospital, Fremont Area Medical Center, York General Hospital, Crete Area Medical Center, CHI Midland’s, CHI Good Samaritan, Midwest Surgery Center, Grand Island Surgery Center, Midwest Imaging Grand Island, and Mary Lanning Hospital.

The team is made up of five board-certified physicians: Dr. Michael Budler, Dr. John Allen, Dr. Jeffrey Himmelberg, Dr. Kyle Pfeifer, and Dr. Sean Pietrini.