Dialysis works by filtering toxins, waste and fluid from your blood through a semipermeable membrane. The 2 types of dialysis, hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis, use different methods to filter blood. With hemodialysis, the filtering membrane is called a dialyzer and is inside a dialysis machine.
While kidney failure is often permanent – beginning as chronic kidney disease and progressing to end-stage kidney disease – it can be temporary. If one experiences acute kidney failure, dialysis is only necessary until the body responds to treatment and the kidneys are repaired.