How does hemolysis occur during a hemodialysis session?
Acute hemolysis is a medical emergency and can result from either problems with the blood tubing or needles or problems with the dialysate.
Any obstruction or narrowing of the blood line, as a result of kinks, manufacturing defects, or the use of small-gauge needles in the presence of high blood flow rates, can cause hemolysis.
Likewise, dialysate that has an incorrect electrolyte concentration, is too hot, or is contaminated with chemicals also can cause hemolysis. Contaminants include chloramine added to the city water supply; formaldehyde or bleach used to reuse dialyzers; or inadequate water treatment resulting in the presence of fluoride, nitrate, zinc, or copper.