Karla News

What is Acquired Cystic Kidney Disease?

Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Kidney Cancer, Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Acquired cystic kidney disease occurs in adults and children, typically to people with chronic kidney disease. The disease has the kidneys developing sacs of fluid called renal cysts. Dialysis increases the risk of this disease.


There are few signs and symptoms of this disease. There may be back pain, chills, and fever if the cysts become infected. If they start to bleed, there may be blood in the urine.

Dialysis Statistics

For people that are just beginning their dialysis treatment, 20 percent already have acquired cystic kidney disease. 60 to 80 percent of the ones that have been on dialysis for four years have the disease. And at the eight year stage of dialysis, 90 percent have the condition.


Imaging tests are given to diagnose the condition, as the cysts show up on them well. They can order a CT, or computerized tomography scan, to get a three dimensional look at the kidneys. An ultrasound is something that is ordered to look at the shape and the size of the kidneys. An MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging test, can also be able to tell tumors and cysts that are in the kidney.


If the cysts are not infected, bleeding, or causing discomfort and pain, the best treatment is for them to be left alone. If there is pain, they can drain them by a needle. If there is infection, antibiotics can be administered. There should be screenings for kidney cancer as part of the long term treatment plant. If a person on dialysis, even long term, gets a new kidney, the cysts usually goes away.

See also  Dialysis Technician Certification Programs

Source: National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse