Fast Five Quiz: Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease Presentation and Diagnosis

Neera K. Dahl, MD, PhD


June 29, 2021

Renal ultrasonography is the diagnostic procedure of choice in the workup of patients with ADPKD. It is also an excellent modality for screening patients' families. Plain radiographs offer incomplete data and findings are normal in early-stage ADPKD; however, with enlargement of the kidneys, soft-tissue masses dislodge the intra-abdominal organs.

CT scanning appears to be more sensitive than ultrasonography for detecting cystic disease, although challenges may arise in cases involving smaller cysts. Both CT and MRI may be useful in cases involving a negative family history, in which ADPKD should be diagnosed on identification of enlarged kidneys with 10 cysts per kidney, concurrent hepatic cysts, and absence of symptoms of any other cystic kidney disease.

Radionuclide studies can play a complementary role in the assessment of renal function in ADPKD, without the added hazard of patient exposure to iodinated contrast material.

Learn more about the workup in patients with ADPKD.


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