Kidney cyst is a fluid filled pouch that extends in your kidney. Kidney is the bean shaped organ which filter wastes out of your bloodstream to produce urine. People may have one cyst in your kidney or multiple cysts in both kidneys.

Cysts are mainly of two types: simple cyst and Polycystic cyst. Simple cysts are individual cysts made in the kidney. They have thin walls and contain a fluid like water. They don’t damage kidneys and affects their function. Polycystic kidney disease is the inherited situation which leads many cysts to form on the kidneys. They can damage the kidneys.

Some cysts are of small size which can only be seen with microscopic. Others cysts can grow to large as a tennis ball. As their size increases, cysts can press on nearby organs and cause pain.

What are the symptoms of kidney cysts?

Simple cysts don’t have any symptoms. If it grows or become infected then it may cause symptoms such as:-
  • Pain in your back or side between your pelvis
  • Fever
  • Pain in upper abdomen
  • Swelling in abdomen
  • Urinating more than usual
  • Blood in the urine
  • Dark urine
Polycystic cysts have the following symptoms:-
  • High blood pressure
  • Blood in urine
  • Pain in your back and side

Causes of kidney cysts

There are not certain causes of kidney cysts. A theory suggested that kidney cysts develop when the surface layer of the kidney weakens and forms a pouch. The pouch fills with fluid, detaches and make cysts.

What are the complications of kidney cysts?

Basically, cysts don’t have any problems. Although, sometimes they can cause complications:-

  • Burst cysts: it causes severe pain in the back
  • Blockage of urine out of the kidney: it obstructs the blood flow of urine may result in swelling of kidney.
  • Infection in the cyst: it may infected that cause fever and pain
  • High blood pressure: it increases your blood pressure

How to diagnose kidney cysts?

Kidney cysts can be diagnosed by tests which include:-
  • Imaging test: imaging tests are used to investigate simple kidney cysts. It includes ultrasound, computerized tomography scan and magnetic resonance imaging. This test can help your doctor check whether a kidney mass is cyst or not.
  • Kidney function test: a sample of blood is tested which show whether a kidney cyst is impairing your kidney function.

Treatment of kidney cysts

When you diagnose a kidney cyst then you need to consult a specialist called urologist. Your specialist may take a blood sample to determine how well your kidneys are working.

If the cyst is small and don’t have any problem with your kidney then you might not require to treat it. But for larger cysts which cause symptoms, required treatments include sclerotherapy and surgery.

  • Sclerotherapy: it is performed to drain the cyst. Firstly, you will require a local anesthetic so that you wouldn’t feel any pain. Through ultrasound, your doctor will put a needle into the cyst through your skin and drain all the fluid from the cyst. Some doctors fill the cyst with an alcohol solution afterward to protect it from growing again. You will probably go home on the same day as the procedure.
  • Surgery: larger cysts affect your kidney function which may need to be removed trough surgery. You will be kipping under general anesthesia during the procedure. Surgeons remove cysts laparoscopically through several small incisions. It means they do the surgery using a camera and small instruments. Surgeons will drain the cysts first. Then they will cut or burn the walls of the cyst. You will be required to stay in the hospital for a day or two after your procedure.

Small kidney cyst doesn’t cause any problems. But it grows then sclerotherapy can remove it without any other complications. Polycystic problem is more serious, it can cause complications such as high blood pressure and kidney failure.

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