Renal Failure and Dialysis


Canonical Reading Material for the Exam Candidate
If the exam candidate finds themselves restricted in terms of time money and effort, they may be able to safely limit their reading to the following key resources, which are indispensible.

Oh's Intensive Care Manual:

Summaries and discussions of renal failure and dialysis topics from Life in the Fast Lane are made available as a list of links in the Resources section.

Oh's Intensive Care Manual is guilty of an almost criminal neglect when it comes to renal failure and dialysis; only two chapters cover this topic, even though these pathologies contribute significantly to our workload and our patient's mortality. There is minimal discussion of circuit maintenance, physical principles of dialysis are skimmed over, and the reader is generally left unsatisfied. One can understand this, given that books in meatspace are limited by the gross physical limitations of paper weight, page count, editing and proofreading, binding, and accomodation costs for the thousands of typewriter monkeys. Almost as if to amend for this shortcoming of the Manual, Bellomo Ronco and Kellum have made a separate contribution in the form of a massive and all-encompassing Critical Care Nephrology.

Critical Care Nephrology is a canonical textbook for this topic, buit cannot be recommended to the time-poor exam candidate, owing to to its tremendous mass. One could get trapped under it. It is probably better to read it after the fellowship.

If one were after some good free overview articles to cover much of the ground, one could do worse than the free PDFs from a 2005 special edition of Critical Care Clinics, edited by John A. Kellum. It is a whole issue dedicated to critical care nephrology.

Additionally, the ADQI site has a series of articles covering the whole spectrum of dialysis and renal failure management. Of specific interest are the conference reports, which promote a certain standard in nomenclature, and which report on the current consensus regarding commencement of dialysis, its dosing, its weaning, and so forth.