A cyst is a fluid filled sack. There are two types of Kidney Cysts common in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients. Those with Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) inherited an abnormality where cysts take the place of normal tissue. They usually enlarge the kidneys, make them work poorly and ultimately cause the kidneys to fail.
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The other type of cysts called Acquired Cystic Kidney Disease (ACKD) usually occurs in people who are on dialysis. Unlike PKD, the kidneys remain normal sized, the cysts do not form in other parts of the body (often having no symptoms at all) and are generally harmless with no need for treatment. However, people with ACKD already have CKD when they develop these type of cysts.
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A new study, published on October 3rd, 2013 in the British Journal of Pharmacology, has identified that a component of grapefruit and other citrus fruits, Naringenin, can successfully block the formation of Kidney Cysts. Although this is a significant finding, KidneyBuzz.com recommends that you consult with your Nephrologist and Dietitian as well as the instructions provided by your Pharmacist about specific directions on your medication. Grapefruit and grapefruit juice are metabolized by the same enzymes in the liver that break down many drug compounds. Eating grapefruit leaves less enzymes available to break down the medication, and the amount of drug remaining in the blood remains high. The Mayo Clinic notes that some individuals may need to stop drinking grapefruit juice or eating grapefruits completely in order to avoid a dangerous drug interaction.
According to physicians at the Harvard Medical School, grapefruit and grapefruit juice interact with a number of calcium channel blocker medications. These are typically prescribed to treat High Blood Pressure and Angina. Your healthcare team will be able to advise you whether you should stop consuming grapefruit, reduce your consumption, or change the timing of your medication to avoid consuming both simultaneously. Orange juice may be an appropriate alternative for those who cannot consume grapefruit at all.
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"Grapefruit & Blood Pressure Medication Precautions." LIVESTRONG.COM.
"Component of Citrus Fruits Found to Block the Formation of Kidney Cysts." Medical Xpress.com.
"Component of Citrus Fruits Found to Block the Formation of Kidney Cysts." Eureka Alert.