What is it?

Medullary sponge kidney (MSK) is a rare congenital disorder characterized by small cysts forming in the renal tubules or the collecting ducts, in one or both kidneys. These fluid sacs reduce the outflow of urine from the kidney. It is more common in women, and the reason for the disorder is not yet known. The condition leads to kidney failure in about 10% of the patients.

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Signs & symptoms

The condition usually does not cause any symptoms. Complications may include urinary tract infections and kidney stones. It may cause flank pain, abdominal, or groin pain, as well as painful urination, and blood in the urine.


Diagnosis is based upon findings from medical history and physical examination. Further evaluation may include X-ray called intravenous pyelogram (IVP), US, CT scan or an MRI.


Treatment usually involves monitoring the kidney structure and function. Urinary tract infections are treated with antibiotics and kidney stones may pass by themselves or may require surgery.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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