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Polycystic Kidney Disease

Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is the most common inherited cause of kidney failure.  Although the condition is present at birth, it progresses slowly over time.  It is very unusual for PKD to cause any serious problems in children.  Typically, kidney failure from PKD occurs in adults.

Most children with PKD are diagnosed because of an affected parent, or because of findings on xrays of the abdomen which may have been taken for another reason.  Nephrologists see such children to be sure of the diagnosis, and then follow them regularly to identify and manage any complications such as infection or high blood pressure.  Dialysis or transplant is rarely needed in childhood for PKD.

There have been a number of recent new developments in the management of patients with PKD.  Although these have not as yet been established in children, our nephrologists continually keep abreast of these developments and will share them with children as soon as they are available.