Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Kidney Disease

Monday, August 17, 2009
One thing I’ve learned since starting the Summer Knowledge Project is that quite a few diseases exist that I have never heard of. It’s this ignorance on my part that I set out to reverse and I can now say that I’ve learned quite a bit about these diseases.

Today’s topic, Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Kidney Disease, is one of those diseases. Until I researched this, I had no idea what to make of it. The first thing I learned was that it affected 1 in 20,000 births. Here are some symptoms:

  • Increased size of the collecting tubule in both kidneys (both kidneys are always affected).
  • Increased urine output in children, due to the inability of the kidneys to regulate water retention.
  • Progressive loss of kidney function.
  • For children who were affected while in the womb, it can cause significant lung damage (the kidneys affect how much amniotic fluid is made, which in turn determines lung function).
  • In children who live past the first month of life (roughly 70% of patients), kidney transplant is almost always required by the age of 10. 82% of those children will be alive by the time they reach the age of 10.
Both sexes and all races are affected equally. In some of our studies, we have learned that one race is affected more than another, but that has not been found in the case of ARPKD. This is good and bad, at least in my opinion. Knowing where a disease came from, and who it affects, seems to help figure out what it developed from, and I couldn’t find much information on this for ARPKD.

There are approximately 12.5 million people affected in some way by this disease in America. If you want to help, please go to the following website:

PKD Foundation


Matt @ The Church of No People said...

Hey Dan, thanks for entering my giveaway! Always is great to meet new people and discover new blogs, and yours is very touching and thougtful. Hope to see you around again.