The Fresenius Liberty Cycler dialysis recall affects patients across the country who were using a home dialysis system called the Fresenius Liberty Cycler.
A peritoneal dialysis system is something designed to be done at home by the patient with help from a family member or another trusted person who can make sure that the dialysis is undertaken carefully and in a very clean and sanitary fashion. Generally, the Liberty Cycler is used overnight. So, there is a permanent port implanted in the patient’s stomach that the Liberty Cycler dialysis machine is hooked up to. Sometimes there is a chest catheter that it’s hooked up to. But in any instance, the patient’s cycler is hooked up to the port or catheter and they sleep overnight while this dialysis takes place. Rather than hemodialysis or dialysis through an intravenous process of your blood, it happens in your stomach cavity.
The Liberty Cycler has been recalled because there were leaks in the machine. If there are leaks in the machine and fluid is coming out, that means bacteria can sneak in. If bacteria sneaks in, the patient can be left with a very serious infection in their peritoneal cavity. Generally it results in hospitalization and extensive intravenous antibiotics and disqualification from any further home peritoneal dialysis. The patient would be switched over to a hemodialysis, which is a very different procedure.