Kidney disease is not exclusive to adults. Children can also be affected by kidney disease, ranging from treatable disorders without long-term consequences to life-threatening conditions. Like in adults, pediatric kidney disease (PKD) can lead to kidney failure (ESRD). Where adults develop CKD over time with pre-existing conditions, children mostly develop PKD from hereditary diseases, birth defects, nephrotic syndrome and systemic diseases.
The rates of CKD are substantially lower in children than adults, but the incidence of CKD is increasing steadily with poor and ethnic minority children disproportionally affected. African Americans in their late teens are three times more likely than Caucasians in the same age group to develop kidney failure. Moreover, boys are nearly twice as likely as girls to develop kidney failure from birth defects, polycystic kidney disease or other hereditary diseases.