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Polycystic Kidney Disease& Kidney Cysts

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PKD & Kidney Cysts

Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is a group of disorders that result from the formation and progressive enlargement of cysts in the kidneys without dysplasia, usually leading to renal failure.

Polycystic Kidney Disease Causes Aneurysm

2013-04-08 15:26

Polycystic kidney disease can cause many complications in other organs and systems besides involving the kidneys such as polycystic liver, pancreatic cyst, aneurysm, etc. Therefore PKD is actually a systemic disease.

Aneurysm is a relatively severe complication for PKD patients because it is often the cause of early death for PKD patients. As a chronic kidney disease, PKD usually takes relatively longer time than other CKD to develop renal failure. Often the cause of death for PKD patients is not renal failure but other complications such as aneurysm, cardiovascular lesions, etc.

High blood pressure will worsen aneurysm and increase the risk of aneurysm rupture, therefore it is very important for PKD patients to seek early and effective treatment to bring their high blood pressure well under control. It has been shown that strict control of hypertension can significantly slow PKD progression.

When the aneurysm is larger than 6mm, it has high risk to get rupture and therefore surgery is often needed for large aneurysms.

In case of aneurysm rupture and bleeding, surgery should be done within 3 days or it can be life-threatening. 25% PKD patients will have lack of blood in their brain, vasoactive drugs or calcium antagonists can be used under the doctor’s permission and guidance.

To lower the risk of aneurysm so as to reduce mortality of PKD and improve the patient’s life expectancy, patients need to have a low-salt, low-fat, low-protein diet especially when more than 50% kidney functions are lost. Tobacco and alcoholic drinks should be avoided.

Not every PKD patients will have aneurysm and its incidence among ADPKD patients is about 8%. If you have family member that suffers from PKD and is found to have aneurysm or if you suffer from vascular spasmodic headache (which is different from the usual headache), early test such as MRI or angiography is recommended. Early detection, effective prevention and timely treatment can help lower its potential harms to the minimal.

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