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Idaho Falls Community Hospital Performs Lifesaving Plasma Treatment

Idaho Falls Community Hospital became the first healthcare organization in the Snake River Valley to perform Therapeutic Plasmas Exchange (TPE) on Wednesday, a lifesaving treatment for patients with plasma abnormalities and deficiencies. Up until recently, patients who needed TPE had to travel to Salt Lake City or Boise for treatment.

“This is a huge step forward for healthcare in our community,” said Dr. Michael Haderlie, a nephrologist with Idaho Kidney Institute and director of Idaho Falls Community Hospital’s new TPE clinic. “Now, instead of being forced to send sick patients hours away for plasma treatment, I can provide the critical care they need close to home. Being able to provide this treatment at Idaho Falls Community Hospital will make a huge difference for many families across our region.”

Plasma plays an important role in our overall health. It carries blood throughout our bodies and removes waste. Unfortunately, sometimes plasma can carry antibodies, toxins or abnormal proteins that make people sick. These irregularities are sometimes associated with an organ transplant, neurological disorders, cancer, blood or autoimmune diseases. In all of these cases, TPE can relieve patients’ symptoms and slow their disease progression.

“Patients can experience improvement in their symptoms in as little as one treatment with Therapeutic Plasma Exchange,” said Dr. Haderlie. “The treatment is so effective because it allows us to remove disease causing agents in a patient’s plasma and simply replace it. It has improved the quality of life of many of my patients and drastically reduced the symptoms associated with their diseases.”

While TPE provides relief for patients, alone it is not a long-term cure for disease.

TPE treatment typically takes about four hours. During this time, abnormal plasma is removed from a patient’s blood and is replaced with new plasma or a plasma substitute. On average, four to five liters of plasma is replaced during one round of TPE. The frequency of treatment varies patient to patient and depends entirely on their condition and symptoms.

Patients who are suffering from cancer or an autoimmune, neurological, blood or kidney disorder should talk to their doctor to see if TPE could help relieve their symptoms and improve their chances of fighting the disease.


Idaho Falls Community Hospital is a full-service hospital with a state-of-the-art emergency room. The team at Idaho Falls Community Hospital is dedicated to providing patients with compassionate, high-quality care in times of sickness and in health. The hospital was built in response to the community’s request for more healthcare choices in eastern Idaho. To learn more, visit