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The main function of the kidneys is to clean the body of waste and toxic substances. When one kidney is bigger than the other, it becomes dangerous to health and speaks about the development of pathology. Urea and uric acid are considered the most harmful in the human body. Accumulating them can be a cause for the development of pathologies and lead to death. Quite often there are minor changes in the size of the kidneys, but often this is the norm and therefore the doctors react calmly. According to research scientists, the kidneys should be age-appropriate and be of the following sizes:
- 6.2 cm from 3 months to a year;
- 7.3 cm – 1−5 years;
- 8.5 cm – 5−10 years;
- 9.8 cm – 10−15 years;
- 10.6 cm – 15−19 years.
The size of the kidneys depends on age, gender and weight. Scientists have determined that all the right organ is slightly smaller than the left, because the liver does not allow it to grow. The kidneys increase to 25 years, and after 50 become smaller. Hypertension or diabetes mellitus leads to pathologies, so it is important to monitor the condition of this paired organ, which plays an important role in the functioning of the body.
Different kidney size in a newborn
At sizes smaller than norm, pyelonephritis, renal failure, obstruction, congenital hypoplasia, arterial stenosis are diagnosed. If the size is above the norm – renal thrombosis or heart attack, acute pyelonephritis, polycystic kidney disease, doubling of the kidney. Pathologies in babies are becoming more common. The most common pyeloectasia is an increase in the pelvis. This can be either congenital or acquired pathology. According to statistics, boys who have an enlarged kidney, more than girls. The causes of the disease are genetic predisposition or improper lifestyle of a pregnant woman. The following factors have a negative effect on intrauterine development:
- smoking and alcohol abuse;
- infectious diseases;
- lack of water;
- venous thrombosis in the fetus;
- electromagnetic radiation;
- sun exposure;
- abdominal trauma.
Alcohol and smoking are extremely negative for the fetal development of a child.
When pyeloectasia from the body of the child is not completely out of urine. This disease can develop into hydronephrosis. In this case, fluid accumulates in the kidney, and the urine comes out normally. Hydronephrosis requires treatment, otherwise the organ will not function properly and there will be a threat to life. Among the causes are called congenital abnormalities in the structure. Pathology is both unilateral and bilateral, often diagnosed with hydronephrosis with a lesion of only one kidney.
Types of pathologies
Three types of pathologies are known: pyeloectasia, when the pelvis is stretched due to the pressure of accumulated urine. Timely treatment will avoid complications, but the body is already enlarged, although it functions normally. Hydrocalycosis, when the renal cups are enlarged and the pelvis stretches even more. The kidney stops functioning properly, because the excess fluid presses on the parenchyma. The growth of renal tissue, when changes in the body are already irreversible. This stage of the disease is dangerous for the development of the newborn.
If you suspect a child’s kidney problems, make a diagnosis immediately. When treating an early stage of the disease, there is a high probability that this will not affect the health of the baby in the future. Therefore, observe, because the development of pathology will not pass without a trace: the child will become restless, blood may appear in the urine. Hydronephrosis can develop in the womb, it can be seen on ultrasound from the 15th week of pregnancy. If an increase in the kidney is clearly visible, it is necessary to monitor the baby throughout the entire pregnancy and to be examined after the birth. Additional diagnostics may also be required: ultrasound diagnosis of the bladder and kidneys, intravenous urography, examination of the urinary system radioisotopes, and urine samples. The doctor will be able to determine the diagnosis when the child is one month old.
Why do children have one kidney more than another?
Sometimes in children changes over time, when one kidney is smaller than the other, this indicates a problem in the genitourinary system. Significant changes in the size of the kidneys indicate the development of pathologies within the body. Among the causes of pathologies in a child are hydronephrosis and hypoplasia. In hypoplasia, one kidney does not develop as a second, such a pathology is more often congenital. Hypoplasia can develop simultaneously with dysplasia or oligophrenia.
Hydronephrosis is congenital and acquired. The peculiarity of the disease is that it can pass without pain. Pathology is determined by painful symptoms, figuring out where discomfort is localized. Enlargement of the kidney is explained by the constant filling of the pelvis. Most often hydronephrosis affects girls from 25 years. Another reason for the increase is the additional vessel, which squeezes the ureter, because of which a normal flow of urine is impossible. No less dangerous is the narrowing of the urinary system, which also impedes the normal flow of urine. Narrowing becomes a consequence of injury to the body.
Symptoms and complications
The main symptom with an increase is pain and abundant urine. To determine abnormalities, the doctor will do palpation of the hypochondrium. An enlarged kidney creates discomfort in the side, the body temperature rises, pains appear when urinating, dull aching pain in the lumbar region, blood appears in the urine. If a healthy organ does not cope with the load, the following symptoms appear:
- pyelonephritis of the smaller organ;
- pale skin;
- high blood pressure;
- diarrhea and vomiting;
- swelling of the face and limbs.
When hydronephrosis goes into the advanced stage, renal failure begins to form. The urine volume decreases, the body becomes swollen. Surgical intervention is carried out with complications: infection of the urinary canals, chronic diseases in which functional cells die, impaired hemodynamics. Also among the possible complications are organ rupture, stones, pyelonephritis and nephrolithiasis.
What to do during treatment?
The doctor prescribes a treatment that will restore the function of the organ or alleviate the condition. When choosing tactics, the degree of damage, the causes of the pathology and the speed of its development are taken into account. In the treatment of prescribed painkillers, anti-inflammatory drugs and drugs that reduce blood pressure. Surgical intervention with the removal of the kidney is possible with complications or inflammations. Living with one, but healthy kidney, is almost the same as living with two. But it is necessary to support the normal work of a healthy organ:
- avoid contact with people who suffer from infectious diseases;
- monitor sleep patterns;
- to temper the body;
- monitor the condition of the teeth.
When treating hypoplasia, a salt-free diet is prescribed, protein intake is restricted, and it is recommended to avoid hypothermia. Most often, a healthy organ is able to compensate for a decrease in activity reduced. But do not forget about the disease, lead a healthy lifestyle, adhere to the recommendations and follow the diet.