Patient Stories

Makris MD – Chicago Access Care

Michelle’s Experience at Makris MD Vascular Center

MakrisMD Vascular Centerhas been a staple in the Chicago area for more than 10 years, providing exceptional patient care in vascular and interventional radiology. Dr. Angelo Makris is the center’s Medical Director and is joined by Drs. Jonathan Levine and Saumil M. Shah, and Physician’s Assistant, Lisa-Marie Gray. This April, patients can experience the most optimal care and endovascular techniques at the practice’s new location, a pristine new building located at 700 Pasquinelli Drive, Westmont, Illinois.

Doors will open on April 25, and those in need of vascular treatments will continue to be welcomed in. Patients range from those who are seeking peripheral artery disease (PAD) treatments or fibroid relief to those battling End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) like Michelle.

MichelleMichelle was just 21 years old when she received her first kidney transplant. She had been diagnosed with a kidney disease called glomerulonephritis, which causes inflammation of the kidney. Michelle was hopeful her kidney transplant would work and kidney disease would be a distant memory.  Unfortunately, her transplant was not successful and she ended up in the hospital with ESRD and in need of dialysis, using a hemodialysis catheter access. Any type of access is an entryway into the body for dialysis. Her catheter was placed in the jugular vein in her neck. Typically a catheter access, because of its location and subsequent risk of infection, is only temporary. Michelle being a young and active woman decided to try a different form of dialysis that did not use needles and could be performed at home called peritoneal dialysis, which also did not work for her body, landing her in the hospital once again.

Her journey led her to go back to hemodialysis and use a different type of access, the fistula, which is deemed the gold standard of accesses in the dialysis community because of their efficacy and lower risk of infection. She underwent the minimally invasive minor surgery to get the fistula placed, but because of her prior catheters her physicians were having trouble opening some of her veins wide enough to get her blood flowing. Michelle feared the worst: that she would have to use a catheter for the rest of her life. That would be mean limited travel, no showering, no swimming, and major risks of infection.

However, Michelle’s luck was about to change when she walked through the doors of MakrisMD Vascular Center and met Dr. Makris and a team of physicians, medical professionals and center employees, five years ago. Dr. Makris met Michelle and assured her that he would not only be able to get her vein open and blood flowing for her dialysis treatments, but that she would feel the best she had felt in years. Performing a minimally invasive procedure called an angioplasty, Dr. Makris did just that.


“Dr. Makris works wonders! He was the only doctor who could get my vein open and fistula working,” said Michelle. In fact, for the past four years, Michelle has been able to use her access for home dialysis treatments that she performs herself. She was trained for a month and a half and now performs dialysis on herself six days a week for two hours each day. This allows her the flexibility to work, have fun with her husband, family and friends, and even travel. She recently just visited Dallas, Texas for 10 days. Michelle noted that “Whenever I go to see Dr. Makris or Dr. Levine, it is such a loving and family-like feeling. The staff as a whole is fantastic. It sounds weird but it is actually fun when I go there. People tell silly stories, and they make you feel good, both physically and mentally!”

Will Michelle be following Dr. Makris and team to the new location? Absolutely! She even encourages anyone who needs an access, or needs work on their access to see MakrisMD Vascular Center first! To learn more about Makris MD, visit:, or call 630-323-8690.