Polycystic kidney disease is a hereditary disease that has two forms passed down from a parent. Polycystic kidney disease is a major cause of death since about half of the people diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease experience end stage renal disease and will need dialysis and kidney transplant.

For those who inherit polycystic kidney disease, cysts that are filled with fluid form in the kidneys and can change their size, interfering with normal kidney function. Many people with polycystic kidney disease do not have any symptoms, and can live their entire lives without knowing they have the disease until it causes end stage kidney disease and kidney failure, requiring dialysis or a kidney transplant.

Ultrasound is the most common way to detect polycystic kidney disease in its initial stage.

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