How Long Can You Live on Dialysis?

The average life expectancy for an American receiving hemodialysis is less than three years, explains the American Clinical and Climatological Association in a 2011 article. This survival time has not changed for over 20 years and depends on a variety of factors, including the age of the patient.

A 55-year-old patient receiving hemodialysis has a mean survival time of five years; however, because most dialysis patients are older than 65, the average survival time is less. Trials aimed at removing more harmful substances from the bloodstream and increasing the frequency of dialysis treatments have not changed the average lifespan of dialysis patients, according to the American Clinical and Climatological Association.