Cortical Cysts: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

It is a common kidney condition that affects people of different ages and genders.

The name of the cyst is given by its location, that is, the renal cortex. The renal cortex is located outside the kidney, responsible for filtering the blood and eliminating toxins from the body.

The cortical cyst appears as a sac that is filled with fluid. The important thing to understand is that a person can have only one cortical cyst or several. In addition, it can appear in only one kidney or it can affect both kidneys.

The severity of the cortical cyst varies according to the existence of an underlying condition. If the patient has kidney problems, the appearance of the cortical cyst may further affect kidney function.

If there are no underlying conditions, the cortical cyst is a benign condition and does not cause complications. The correct diagnosis of the cortical cyst is essential to choose the appropriate treatment.

For the diagnosis, the doctor may decide to perform an exam, such as an ultrasound, an MRI, or a CT scan.

If you have been diagnosed with a cortical cyst, then the prognosis is not worrisome and the treatment is easy to follow. This is because the cyst is outside the kidneys and not inside the real organ.

Cortical cysts are more common in older people and have a tendency to grow over time. In many people, they do not cause symptoms.

Symptoms of cortical cysts

If the cortical cyst becomes large enough, a palpable mass may be felt in the area of ​​the kidney.

As the cortical cyst can have an impact on the function of the kidneys, the person may feel the need to urinate frequently.

The cortical cyst can cause pain. Pain may radiate from the kidney area to other parts of the body, such as the back, abdomen, ribs, or hip. The pain can vary from mild to severe, being often described by patients as annoying.

The color of the urine may change in the presence of blood to a darker shade (hematuria). Urine can also contain large amounts of protein, a condition known as proteinuria.

Since it is known that the kidneys regulate blood pressure, a larger renal cyst can cause high blood pressure. This is because the cyst can cause ischemia in the kidneys, with increased renin secretion.

What are the causes of cortical cysts?

Despite advances in the medical field, the causes that lead to the appearance of cortical cysts have not yet been identified.

Studies of patients performed in controlled groups have suggested that the glomeruli in the kidneys may have an abnormal structure that favors the appearance of the cortical cyst (congenital modification).

In certain patients, the renal tubules are abnormally structured as well. These abnormal modifications predispose these patients to infections, among other problems.

There are two predisposing factors that contribute to the appearance of cortical cysts, that is, age and sex.

The incidence of cortical cysts increases as one advances in age and it seems that there are more men diagnosed with this problem than women.

Aging is not necessarily a factor, since many of these cortical cysts appear in middle-aged people, but evolve with age.

They become obvious in patients who are older, as they have grown to a considerable size to cause bothersome symptoms.

Treatment of cortical cysts

The recommended treatment for cortical cyst depends on the size. Small cysts do not cause any symptoms and are often detected by accident.

If the doctor will identify a cortical cyst that is less than 3 cm in diameter, then no treatment will be prescribed. However, you will have to visit the doctor’s office regularly to control the cortical cyst.

If the cyst becomes enlarged, causing bothersome symptoms, then the doctor may reconsider and prescribe a treatment for your condition.

Surgical excision is recommended in cases of cortical cysts that have reached a considerable size, causing a wide variety of symptoms. The procedure is simple and often performed under local anesthesia.

The doctor will use a special needle, guided by ultrasound, to reach the cortical cyst and extract the fluid. After the fluid has been completely removed from the cyst, alcohol will be applied inside the cyst to prevent secondary infections.

If you are interested in natural remedies that can help reduce the size of your cortical cyst, be sure to use herbs.

Locally applied herbal treatments in the kidney area will not solve the problem completely, but will help with the reduction in size and improve the symptoms experienced.

Since the exact causes of the cortical cyst are not known, the doctor may recommend that you make several changes in your lifestyle. These are related to leaving unhealthy habits such as smoking and drinking alcohol.

You will be recommended to follow a healthier diet, based on fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition, the doctor will instruct you to physically activate.

All these changes can prevent the cortical cyst from enlarging and causing more bothersome symptoms. In addition, they can help you keep the condition under control and delay surgery as much as possible.

One of the most important changes you should make is to reduce your sodium intake. It is known that sodium has a negative effect on blood pressure. If you already have a cortical cyst, a large sodium intake will only increase your blood pressure even more.

Choose a diet low in sodium and it will also protect your kidneys. If the kidneys are protected, then the cortical cyst will also remain under control. If you have a lot of pain, your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications to relieve symptoms.