Polycystic Kidney Disease

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What is Polycystic Disease?

PKD (Polycystic kidney disease) is an inherited disorder, and it is formed inside the kidneys. Generally, it can be diagnosed as a fluid-filled cyst (bubbles). The polycystic disease is one of the leading factors for kidney diseases and can lead to kidney failure.

People with PKD may develop cysts in other parts of the body, like “the liver,” and develop further complications. As it is a dangerous disorder and can lead to serious damage to the kidneys if not treated on time.

Complications & Symptoms of Polycystic Kidney Disease

Polycystic disease is a natural disorder, and most people ignore it. Another major reason we can also consider is the ignorance of the symptoms of PKD because it has the same symptoms as other diseases too. But people need to understand with a simple test; they can diagnose if cysts are present inside your kidneys or not. Later, in this article, we are going to discuss the correct treatment and diagnostic methods, but first, examine the following symptoms of PKD.

  • Pain or tenderness in the abdomen
  • Blood in the urine
  • Frequent urination
  • Pain in the sides
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI)
  • Kidney stones
  • Pain or heaviness in the back
  • Skin that bruises easily
  • Pale skin color
  • Fatigue
  • Joint pain
  • Nail abnormalities

Causes of Polycystic Kidney Disease

As we have already discussed in the introduction part, it is an inherited disorder. So, most people mostly children get this disease from their parents naturally. And in some cases, children get this disorder via “gene mutation” without any involvement of parents.

Generally, there are three types of PKD.

1. Autosomal dominant PKD
It is also called adult PKD. According to the National Kidney Foundation, almost 90% of the cases are diagnosed with ADPKD. It is also called an inherited disorder, and if a parent is diagnosed with PKD, then the inherited person has 50% of developing this condition.

2. Autosomal recessive PKD
This disorder is also the same as ADPKD, but it’s less common. For this disorder to occur, both parents must have the gene. It is less common because there are 50-50 chances; if carriers of ARPKD have the gene from one parent only, then it will not show any symptoms in the body.

Types of ARPKD:

  • Perinatal form: attainable after birth.
  • Neonatal form: Found within the first month of life.
  • Infantile form: This happens when the child is between 3 and 12 months old.
  • Juvenile form: manifests once the child turns one year old.

3.  Acquired cystic kidney disease
ACKD, or Acquired cystic kidney disease, occurs later in life with some circumstances like kidney failure or people on dialysis. Also, this is an acquired disorder, so carrier of ACKD doesn’t get it from their parents.

Diagnosis and treatment

In the case of ADPKD and ARPKD, your doctor will ask about your family history and details regarding previous diseases. Post, some blood tests will be performed to look for any sign of infection, bacteria, or protein in the urine.

Your doctor may utilise imaging tests to look for cysts of the kidney, liver, and other organs in order to diagnose all three kinds of PKD.

The following imaging studies are used to diagnose PKD:

  • Abdominal Ultrasonography: You may check for cysts in your kidneys using sound waves in this non-invasive examination.
  • Abdominal CT scan: Smaller kidney cysts can be found using this technique.
  • MRI scan of the abdomen: An MRI scans your body with the use of powerful magnets to show kidney shape and scan for cysts.
  • Intravenous Pyelogram: In order to make your blood vessels appear more clearly on an X-ray during this test, a dye is used.