Baby with One Kidney

Updated on February 17, 2010
J.B. asks from Bethlehem, PA
14 answers

My friend just found out that their baby (fetus) only has one kidney.The baby is at 20weeks gestation. What I wanted to find out was, is there anyone out there who has a child with only one kidney? What kind of complications could arise as this child gets older and is this type of abnormality indicitive of other complications with the baby?

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So What Happened?

Well, my friend had an ultrasound done down at Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia and it seems the kidneys are fused together. So, on the ultrasound it appears as if theres only one kidney. But the pediatric urologist who they consulted with told them in the large scheme of things- it wasn't a horrible situation. That this child could live with only one kidney. They did talk about putting the baby on antibiotics right away and being examined every several months by a pediatric specialist. She goes for another ultra sound at 32weeks- would would be sometime in March.

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L.O.

answers from Reading on

I can't tell you much about this but I can tell you I have a girlfriend who was born with only one kidney and she is a wonerderful woman now with a 2 yr old son. Having a child was a challenge for her however they have one wonderful little boy who was born 10 weeks earlier and does have some problem but she lives a full life.

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S.W.

answers from Scranton on

hi my name is S., i have a 4 yr old daughter who was born with one kidney. also found out in utero. she has not had any real problems. when she got a cold (as an infant) she would refuse to drink so she would get dehydrated. she spent time in the hospital till they got her elecrolites back up. but other than that she is fine. she has no restrictions except she cant play contact sports. she hasnt been in the hospital in a year and a half. she is much better when she has a cold. just tell ur friend to give the baby lots of fluids, and she or he will be fine. if she has any questions u or her can email me at ____@____.com

1 mom found this helpful

M.W.

answers from Philadelphia on

My daughter, now 2, only has one functioning kidney. She is otherwise normal, but we have to watch her very carefully for urinary tract infections so that her one kidney is not damaged. She had an infection once and was treated in the hospital with antibiotics. She recovered well and is very healthy. And she is now on daily antibiotics until she's potty-trained, just as a precuation.

When your friend's baby is born, she should make sure that the baby sees a nephrologist or urologist as soon as possible, preferably at a children's hospital if possible. This way, the condition can be monitored just in case something should come up. Also, they may want to prescribe medication for her newborn to prevent any infections from occuring.

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K.S.

answers from Washington DC on

They probably did an amniocentesis because some conditions give rise to having one kidney, and sometimes it's just a very common birth defect with no other problems. You need only one kidney to live. If it's just that the baby has the one kidney (and that's a very, very common birth issue), there shouldn't be any complications.

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L.E.

answers from Philadelphia on

Ironically, my friend who is 36 years old just found out she had one kidney. So the implications???...not horrible, obviously she has been living all these years and never knew it. However, the reason she even found out was b/c she got pregnant and has 2 uteruses - apparently there is a correlation between females having 1 kidney and 2 uteruses?? Who knew. My guess would be the only implication on this child was if they had renal insufficiency and somehow the kidneys were impacted. Of course in renal disease they can take out a kidney, but if you only had one??? I am not a doctor by any means, but like I said I have a friend who just found out she only has one kidney

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K.F.

answers from Philadelphia on

Hi Jamie my brother too only has one kidney.Hes 34

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H.

answers from Pittsburgh on

My grandmother-in-law just learned that she only has 1 kidney maybe only 2-3 years ago. She is about 78 years old and never even knew about it since there wasn't ultrasound when she was a baby. She wasn't having a kidney issue - I don't remember why she was having tests done actually, but they came upon the single kidney by accident and it was perfectly healthy. She definitely was having the ultrasound or whatever test for some reason unrelated to her kidney.

Someone else mentioned that you can live with only 1 kiney - this is obviously true. The only concern I can think of is that should something happen to that one kidney to damage it, she will not have the possibility that the second is still healthy and functional and may be more likely to require a transplant. Provided she lives a healthy lifestyle and isn't in some kind of accident that physically damages that kidney, she will most likely never have any consequences to having just 1. On the flip side, an illness damaging the kidney isn't likely to affect just one so a person with 2 kidneys that develops a serious illness affecting the kidneys may be just as likely to need a transplant to recover.

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S.K.

answers from Philadelphia on

This may or may-not be of help to you, but I did see a program just like your on the Learning Channel (the baby channel,Discovery health, one of these channels in which her OB/GYN & PED Surgeon did surgery on the baby while it was in mom's womb. (i forget how old but the baby was tiny, you could barely see her fingers when they were manuvering the fetus around in the womb, to be positioned for surgery.

Also I was told to tell you, ask your Doc, OB/GYN or MID-WIFE, about stem cell. They could use some of the fetus stem cell to grow a new kidney.(but you'd get info on exactly how this would work & if it would benefit the baby & your-self. ( If your gettin a feeling like one of the Doctor's aren't being straight with you about the info, ask somebody else or go to learning channel & look up Stem Cell. What ever you choose to do, I wish you & the baby well.
My name is S. mother of 5.

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M.K.

answers from Pittsburgh on

I have family members who have 1 kidney, the problems for this family member arised when he was an adult. diet will help but if not caught it could lead to having dialisis later also high blood pressure but because they found uot eairly enough they can fix the situation and possibly be on the waiting list for a second kidney.

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N.D.

answers from Washington DC on

My cousin had a baby a year and a half ago to a baby girl with just one kidney. So far she has had no problems at all

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J.M.

answers from Philadelphia on

My friend was born with one kidney and he hasnt had any problems! You only need one kidney to live. I dont know what kind of problems there could be

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L.L.

answers from Redding on

Hi I found out that i had just one kidney and they told me i was going to have alot of problems. but to this day i am still fine have not had any problems. i live my normal life playing sports and everything else.

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L.O.

answers from Reading on

I can't tell you much about this but I can tell you I have a girlfriend who was born with only one kidney and she is a wonerderful woman now with a 2 yr old son. Having a child was a challenge for her however they have one wonderful little boy who was born 10 weeks earlier and does have some problem but she lives a full life.

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S.C.

answers from Allentown on

My brother has lived with one kidney since birth. He is 46 yrs old.
S. C

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L.N.

answers from Pittsburgh on

I have a friend whose baby either only had one kidney, or had to get one out shortly after delivery. He is doing just fine.

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