Often, peritonitis associated with peritoneal dialysis is caused by germs around the catheter. If you're receiving peritoneal dialysis, take the following steps to prevent peritonitis:
- Wash your hands, including underneath your fingernails and between your fingers, before touching the catheter.
- Clean the skin around the catheter with an antiseptic every day.
- Store your supplies in a sanitary area.
- Wear a surgical mask during your dialysis fluid exchanges.
- If you have pets, don't sleep with them.
- Talk with your dialysis care team about proper care for your peritoneal dialysis catheter.
If you've had spontaneous peritonitis before or if you have peritoneal fluid buildup due to a medical condition such as cirrhosis, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to prevent peritonitis. If you’re taking a proton pump inhibitor, your doctor may ask you to stop taking it.
If you develop new abdominal pain or have a new injury
Peritonitis may result from a burst appendix or trauma-related abdominal injury.
March 31, 2015
- Seek immediate medical attention if you develop abdominal pain so severe that you're unable to sit still or find a comfortable position.
- Call 911 or emergency medical assistance if you have severe abdominal pain following an accident or injury.
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- Ferri FF. Peritonitis, secondary. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2015: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2015. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed March 12, 2015.
- Treatment methods for kidney failure: Peritoneal dialysis. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NKUDIC). http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/KUDiseases/pubs/peritoneal/index.aspx. Accessed March 13, 2015.
- Runyon BA. Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis in adults: Treatment and prophylaxis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 12, 2015.
- Acute abdominal pain. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gastrointestinal_disorders/acute_abdomen_and_surgical_gastroenterology/acute_abdominal_pain.html?qt=&sc=&alt=. Accessed March 12, 2015.
- Picco MF (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 24, 2015.
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- Goel GA, et al. Increased rate of spontaneous bacterial peritonitis among cirrhotic patients receiving pharmacologic acid suppression. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. 2012;10:422.
- Burkart JM, et al. Tunnel and peritoneal catheter exit site infections in continuous peritoneal dialysis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 13, 2015.