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What treatments are available for multicystic dysplastic kidney?
In the past, the precise diagnosis was difficult to determine, so all multicystic dysplastic kidneys were removed by nephrectomy (removal of the diseased kidney). With advances in medical imaging, the correct diagnosis can now be established with near certainty. This has led some clinicians to begin recommending surveillance instead of nephrectomy.
There is no uniform consensus on the best form of treatment for this condition. The condition is being monitored by a national registry (National Multicystic Kidney Registry), and some of their findings include the following:
Currently, most pediatric urologists who recommend monitoring the kidney perform serial ultrasound examinations until the kidney totally regresses or becomes undetectable by ultrasound.
Surgical removal is an option, and many parents have elected this form of treatment. With surgery, there is no further need for routine/serial surveillance because there is no risk of hypertension or a tumor arising from the kidney.
If you choose this option, your child's kidney may be removed through a small skin incision or by a procedure called a laparoscopic nephrectomy (kidney removal). Children's is one of the few hospitals in the world to use robotic surgery technology for nephrectomy procedures. In 2001, we were the first pediatric hospital to acquire a surgical robot, and today, Children's surgeons perform more pediatric robotic surgeries than any other hospital in the world.
Laparoscopic nephrectomy may be:
During your child's laparoscopic nephrectomy:
Surgery may also be appropriate when the multicystic dysplastic kidney is very large and causes difficulty with feeding or breathing due to its size.
This is a congenitally developed lesion and not related to the adult condition known as adult polycystic kidney disease.
What is the long-term outlook for a child with a complete or partial nephrectomy?
The long-term outlook for a child with a complete or partial nephrectomy is very good, since most people have a second, normally functioning kidney that can adequately meet the body's needs.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”