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Polycystic kidney disease

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Polycystic kidney disease is a disorder in which clusters of cysts develop primarily within your kidneys. Cysts are noncancerous (benign) lesions, usually round and hollow and containing waterlike fluid. They vary in size from tiny sacs to sacs large enough to hold several quarts of fluid.

Polycystic kidney disease is a disorder in which clusters of cysts develop primarily within your kidneys. Cysts are noncancerous (benign) lesions, usually round and hollow and containing waterlike fluid. They vary in size from tiny sacs to sacs large enough to hold several quarts of fluid.Having a benign kidney cyst is common. At least half of Americans older than age 50 often have one or more kidney cysts. A benign, simple kidney cyst doesnt require treatment. And, having one or more kidney cysts doesnt mean you have polycystic kidney disease.Polycystic kidney disease isnt limited to your kidneys, although the kidneys usually are the most severely affected organs. The disease can cause cysts to develop in your liver, pancreas, membranes that surround your brain and central nervous system, and seminal vesicles. Other complications may occur as well.The greatest risk for people with polycystic kidney disease is high blood pressure (hypertension). Complications from hypertension are the leading cause of death in people with the disease. Kidney failure also is common with polycystic kidney disease.Abnormal genes are the cause of polycystic kidney disease, and there currently is no way of preventing or reversing the development of kidney cysts in these people. But the disease varies greatly in its severity, and its complications may be prevented. Regular checkups can lead to treatments to reduce damage to your kidneys from complications such as high blood pressure.Polycystic kidney disease affects between 1 in 400 and 1 in 1,000 people born in the United States.(Source: Mayo Clinic, 23 June 2003)

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Posted On: 23 June, 2003
Modified On: 5 December, 2013

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