Kidney transplantation is the gold-standard treatment of end-stage renal disease. Receiving a pre-emptive transplant ensures the best survival for both the recipient and the allograft. However, due to an overwhelming discrepancy between available donors and patients on the transplant waiting list, the vast majority of transplant candidates require prolonged periods of dialytic therapy before transplant.
Peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis have been traditionally considered as competitive renal replacement therapies. This dualistic vision has been recently questioned by emerging evidence suggesting that an individualized and flexible approach may be more appropriate. Tailored and cleverly planned shifts between different modalities, according to the patient’s needs, represents the best option.
Remarkably, recent data seem to support the use of peritoneal dialysis over hemodialysis in patients waiting for a kidney transplant. In this specific setting, the perceived advantages of PD are better overall recipient survival and quality of life, longer preservation of residual renal function, lower incidence of delayed graft function and reduced cost.
Keywords: peritoneal dialysis, kidney transplant, hemodialysis, renal replacement therapy, waiting-list, residual renal function, quality of life, delayed graft function