27) The Phosphorus Itch

July 6, 2006

Got an email from Marilyn the social worker, saying all was set for my visit to the dialysis center in Dallas next week. Then, an hour or so later, Marilyn called to say that things aren¹t certain for next week: "they lost the fax I sent, and have a new social worker, and are being a little hesitant about this whole thing. So, it¹s not for sure yet." She promised to work on it though. I am thinking, these guys are not as organized as they seem to be... and ask, "Is there anything I can do?". I need to get a TB test and give Marilyn my address and phone number in Dallas.

El Milagro: Gladys cannulated me again. Herman stops by to ask me about two restaurants in El Paso that I don¹t know about. Jennifer the dietician stops with a report on my blood work: my phosphorus is higher again so we talk about what all I¹ve been eating and she draws a promise out of me to not eat any enchiladas for the next week to see it that¹s the culprit. The phosphorus is so high right now that they might have to add another binder. Also, it is probably the reason I¹ve been so itchy lately: every night Liz has to scratch my back until there are red marks and I finally sigh in relief. Liz reads to me later, "High phosphorus causes bone disease, itching and deposits in your heart, eyes, joints, blood vessels, and skin." Yuck! Herman comes back later and gives me a TB test that we¹ll read on Saturday.

Notes: In at 74.3 Kg, and out at 72.8 Kg.
2) For more on Phosphorus, see Post #6: Phosphorus News.
3) There is a new comment from Cecilia on Post # 7: It Started with Synthroid


Happymama said...

Hi Jack,
I'm Kristi. I was doing a search for my daddy who is on dialysis also and is experiencing a LOT of itching. We know it's from his phosphorus level. Just looking for a way to relive it. I'll be sure to direct him to your blog. I'm sure it would do him good to read about others who are in the same boat and he can relate to.


Jack Nowicki said...

Kristi ~ The best thing to alleviate the phosphorous itch is to lower the phosphorous intake... I found that the itch goes away almost immediately; at least within a day or so. Find a list of high phosphorous foods (chocolate, packaged bread products (pancakes, biscuits, etc.), beans, ice cream, nuts, cheese, pizza, etc. and get them out of his diet. For me the big one was Mexican food with all it's cheeses. Getting those foods out of my diet stopped the itching in about 2 days. Good luck. JN

Jack Nowicki said...

Kristi wrote back to say: Thanks! I'll be sure to tell him. He probably already knows, but I'll reinforce it. The itch is brand new to him, although he's been on dialysis for a couple of years now. So I'll pass this along to my mom so she'll know what NOT to buy at the store. Thanks so much!! OH!! I've read a lot about binders....he's under the impression that all he needs are a few tums before his meals. From what I've been reading, there are binders that work together and usually prescribed by the doctor.


Kristi ~ Since folks get info off my blog, I'm putting your response up here for everyone to use. In response to your binders thoughts: I am on two binders that I use at each meal or snack to bind with the phosphorous and move it out of my intestine before it is absorbed. As you may know, dialysis doesn't take the phosphorous out of the system so when we use binders they help. The binders I use are a chewable chalk-like tablet called Fosrenol and 3 capsules named Phoslo. I try to remember and have these things available on my person at all times so I can use them whenever I eat a meal or substantial snack. Ask your dad to ask his doc about if binders will help him. JN