Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Student Scholarship

Date Written

Summer 2015

Document Type


Course Number

NURS 5330

Course Name

Advanced Pathophysiology

Professor’s Name

John D. Chovan, James R. Cacchillo


PKD, Patient Education, Renal Diseases

Subject Categories

Medical Pathology | Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing | Nutritional and Metabolic Diseases


A young male patient was recently admitted to the intensive care unit at a local hospital with hypertensive urgency and acute renal failure of unknown etiology. A renal ultrasound showed polycystic kidneys and upon further investigation, it was discovered that the patient’s mother passed away last year from end stage renal failure related to polycystic kidney disease (PKD). The aforementioned case and the recent study into inherited disorders are what prompted further investigation into PKD. Liebau and Serra (2013) explain that “inherited cystic kidney diseases, autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) and autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease (ARPKD), are the most common monogenetic causes of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) in children and adults” (p. 1771). It is estimated that one in a thousand individuals will be diagnosed with PKD in adulthood and one in twenty thousand in childhood (Liu et al, 2012, p. 1). Considering this statistic, patients with PKD may be seen throughout all facets of health care. As a health care provider, primary or otherwise, it is important to educate and appropriately treat PKD patients in an effort to prevent unnecessary damage to their bodies related to complications of the disease. The utilization of genetic testing is not standard treatment, but may pose some benefits to certain at risk patients in identifying the disease. However, healthy lifestyle choices are necessary in order to slow disease progression.



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