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Complications of Horseshoe Kidney in Children

Provided by Expert Zhang Youkang on 2012-10-24 16:57

Horseshoe kidney occurs in about one in 500 children. It is a congenital condition, in which kidneys fuse together to form a horseshoe-shape during fetal development. With the disease progression, the children may experience the following complications.

Approximately 1/3 patients with horseshoe kidney will have at least one other anormaly or complication involving the cardiovascular system, the central nervous system, or genitourinary system. The complications are as follows:

Urinary tract infection

Urinary tract infection is commonly seen, but is usually uncommon in children under the 5 years. This condition is more common in girls than boys. Without control, it may affect kidneys directly to cause serious kidney infection.

Kidney stone

Kidney stone can be seen in children with horseshoe kidney. If the stones remain in the kidneys, the children usually do not have symptoms. However, if the stones pass through the urinary tract, the children will have the following symptoms:

Fever and chills

Cloudy urine

Increased urination

Flank pain

Blood in urine


Nausea and vomiting

Cloudy urine


Kidney structure abnormality can affect the excretion of urine from body, leading to urinary tract obstruction. It can enlarge kidneys and damage kidneys gradually. If hydronephrosis occurs, the following symptoms will occur:

Urinary tract infection

Decreased urine output

Body weight again due to retention of fluids

Abdominal mass

In fact, about one-third of children with horseshoe kidney do not develop symptoms or complications. If the symptoms and complications can be controlled well, the patients can avoid developing renal failure.

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