Background. Patients with chronic renal failure treated with hemodialysis are subjected to a high degree of stress. The aim of the study was to determine which components of stress become the most critical for the dialysed persons and how the degree of subjective stress depends on sex, age, and continuance of dialysis.
Methods and Results. 66 patients (40 females and 26 males) with chronic renal failure regularly treated with hemodialysis were included into the studied group. Average age was 57 years (26 to 75 years). Serial hemodialysis program lasted in average 51 months (4 to 144 monts). Patients filled in the Scale of Hemodialysing Stressors, which contained 31 items, 6 of them physiological and 25 psychosocial. Each stressor was ranked in four-point Likert’s scale. Results were given in average values with standard deviation. To compare differences in subgroups, non-paired t-test was employed. Results showed that among the most serious stressors belongs the limitation of physical activity (average 1.91), limited possibilities for recreation (average 1.76), loss of body functions (average 1.68), fatigue (average 1.67), restriction of drinking (average 1.61). Average stress score for the whole scale was 32±11 with theoretically highest value of 93. Global stress score did not differ in males and females, in elderly patients (over 50 years) it was statistically higher than in younger ones (p<0.05) and in patients treated over one year it was higher than in those cured less long (p<0.05).
Conclusions. Dialysed patients are stressed namely by psychosocial factors. Most influenced are the older and for longer time dialysed patients. The short and long-lasting dialysis brings about similar level of stress. Stress can reach the highest level during the last year of the patient’s life.
hemodialysis, physiological stressors, psychosocial stressors