Hemodialysis (HD) patients who switch their vascular access from a catheter to a fistula or graft have improved survival, a study of 79,545 HD patients found.

Compared with patients who continue to use catheters, those who convert to a fistula or graft have a 31% decreased risk of death, researchers reported in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases (2009;54:912-921).

Subjects who switch from a fistula or graft to a catheter have a twofold increased risk of death.

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