On September 4th every year, we recognize PKD Awareness Day. A day dedicated to educating and inspiring our friends, families, and communities to learn about PKD. When more people learn about PKD, more people get involved. And that means more resources dedicated to finding treatments and a cure.

What is PKD?

Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is a chronic, genetic disease, causing uncontrolled growth of fluid-filled cysts in the kidneys. As the cysts accumulate more fluid, they get bigger and bigger, destroying healthy tissue, which leads to high blood pressure, other complications, and often kidney failure.

A typical kidney is the size of a human fist and weighs about a third of a pound. Polycystic kidneys can be much larger, some growing as large as a football. Kidneys can develop cysts ranging in size from as small as a pinhead to as large as a grapefruit.

There are two types of genetic PKD:

autosomal dominant

ADPKD is the more common type of PKD and is estimated to affect more than 600,000 Americans and 12.4 million people worldwide.

autosomal recessive

ARPKD is a rare form of PKD that occurs in 1 in 25,000 children worldwide.

There is no cure. But with the first treatment for ADPKD approved in 2018 and ongoing clinical trials, there is hope.

Get social

Share your story

Submit your story through Voices of PKD or on social media using the hashtags #VoicesofPKD and #FoundationFeature.

Spread awareness

Download and share information about ADPKD and ARPKD. Hashtags to use: #endPKD and #PKDAwarenessDay

Wear teal

Share a photo of yourself in teal, the designated awareness color for PKD. Hashtags to use: #endPKD and #PKDAwarenessDay

Get involved

Walk to #endPKD

Be a part of our largest fundraising and public awareness event. 100% of all donations go to PKD research!

Join the ADPKD Registry

Help drive the next medical breakthrough for ADPKD patients. You have the power to #endPKD

You have the power to #endPKD


Learn how to advocate for legislative changes that benefit our community and receive important alerts.


When you donate to a the PKD Foundation, a Charity Navigator Four Star Charity, you can be confident that your donation is making a real difference for individuals with PKD. Your gift helps us fund research, advocate for patients, and build a community for all impacted by polycystic kidney disease.

About the PKD Foundation

We are the only organization in the U.S. solely dedicated to finding treatments and a cure for polycystic kidney disease (PKD) and to improving the lives of those it affects. Since 1982, we have proudly funded more than 1,300 research projects and leveraged $1.5B in research funds, while serving our local communities across the country. We are inspired by our mission. And driven by our vision.


OUR MISSION: WE GIVE HOPE. We fund research, advocate for patients, and build a community for all impacted by PKD.

Page last reviewed August 2021

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