The kidneys are responsible to filter fluid and wastes from the blood to form urine. Kidney dysplasia is a condition that can occur in babies while they are growing in the womb. Other terms that health care providers and scientists use to describe this condition are renal dysplasia and multicystic dysplastic kidney (MCDK).
In kidney dysplasia, the internal structures of one or both of the baby’s kidneys do not develop normally. Fluid-filled sacs called cysts replace normal kidney tissue. Kidney dysplasia usually happens in only one kidney.
Kidney dysplasia is often found during a foetal ultrasound, which is also called a sonogram. The foetal ultrasound uses sound waves to create images of the baby growing in the womb. Not in every case, the condition is detected before the baby is born. After birth, an enlarged kidney may be detected during an examination for a urinary tract infection.
When there are no symptoms, no treatment may be necessary. The child is monitored with periodic ultrasounds to look at the affected kidney and to make sure the other kidney continues to grow normally and doesn’t develop any other problems.
Children with urinary tract infections are prescribed antibiotics. Removal of the kidney is considered only if the kidney causes pain, results in high blood pressure or shows abnormal changes on ultrasound.
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