Polycystic Kidney Disease Types

The three types of polycystic kidney disease are autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease, and acquired cystic kidney disease. Both autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive are inherited. Acquired cystic kidney disease is not an inherited condition, but is linked to long-term kidney problems, dialysis, and old age. Roughly 90 percent of polycystic kidney disease cases are autosomal dominant.

Polycystic Kidney Disease Types: An Overview

There are three types of polycystic kidney disease (PKD):
 
Both autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive are inherited polycystic kidney disease types. Acquired cystic kidney disease is not inherited, but it is associated with long-term kidney problems, dialysis, and old age.
 

Polycystic Kidney Disease Types: Autosomal Dominant

Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease is one type of PKD. It is also one of the most common inherited conditions. An inherited condition is one that is passed from parent to child through a defect (mutation) in a gene.
 
Many people with autosomal dominant PKD live for decades without developing polycystic kidney disease symptoms. For this reason, autosomal dominant PKD is often called "adult polycystic kidney disease." Yet, in some cases, cysts may form earlier, even in the first years of life. About 90 percent of all PKD cases are autosomal dominant PKD.
 
(Click Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease for more information on this type of PKD.)
 

Polycystic Kidneys

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