Complementary and alternative medicine is popular among chronic renal failure patients – renal teams must increase their competence to advise patients with respect to efficacy and safety
- 1Center for Nephrology and Dialysis, Lindau/Bodensee, Germany
- 2Fifth Department of Medicine, University Hospital Mannheim, Mannheim, Germany
- Correspondence to Rainer Nowack
Center for Nephrology and Dialysis, Dialysezentrum Lindau, Friedrichshafener Str. 82; D-88131 Lindau, Germany;
Implications for practice and research
■ Renal nurses should realise that a substantial subset of their patients use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) to treat their renal disease.
■ Active inquiry about CAM is warranted, as some products may be harmful for the patient (eg, by causing interactions with medication).
■ To better advise patients, nurses and physicians need to improve their knowledge about efficacy and safety of CAM.
■ For the sake of the patient's safety, research on nurses' communication skills is warranted. Nurses need to be trained to inquire successfully about CAM usage, (eg, by using structured questionnaires).
A substantial subset of patients with chronic renal failure (CRF) has to accept that their disease will progress to end-stage renal disease (ESRD) despite modern evidence-based therapy. Dialysis-dependency is a bitter burden and patients fear the …