Birth defects are abnormal physical or biological conditions that happen to a baby while growing in its mother’s womb. Birth defects can be a result of an environmental issue or a genetic disease. Common birth defects related to the kidneys include:

  • Being born with one kidney instead of two (renal agenesis, or solitary kidney)
  • Being born with two kidneys, but one that does not work (renal dysplasia)
  • Being born with a kidney that is not in the right location (ectopic kidney)

Most children born with a kidney birth defect will not have major health problems. Children born with a single kidney or one non-working kidney may have a higher chance of getting kidney disease later in life. If a child is born with a kidney birth defect, talk to the child’s pediatrician about how often they should be checked for signs of kidney disease.

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