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A vascular access is a surgically created vein that ensures the continuous flow of blood during hemodialysis, a life-saving treatment for patients affected by kidney failure. There are three types of vascular accesses for long-term and short-term use. One of the most popular vascular accesses for long-term use includes an arteriovenous fistula for hemodialysis.

An arteriovenous fistula is a type of vascular access that connects an artery to a vein, usually in the upper arm or forearm. This fistula helps the vein grow large and strong, providing increased access to essential blood vessels. Without this access, hemodialysis would not be possible for many reasons. First, weak veins cannot withstand repeated needle insertions. Second, an arteriovenous fistula provides good blood flow during dialysis and usually lasts longer than other kinds of accesses. Third, patients are less likely to experience infections or blood clots with an arteriovenous fistula.