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Overview of Nephritic Syndrome

By

Frank O'Brien

, MD, Washington University in St. Louis

Last full review/revision Jul 2021| Content last modified Jul 2021
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Nephritic syndrome is defined by hematuria, variable degrees of proteinuria, usually dysmorphic red blood cells (RBCs), and often RBC casts on microscopic examination of urinary sediment. Often 1 of the following elements are present: edema, hypertension, elevated serum creatinine, and oliguria. Nephritic syndrome has both primary and secondary causes. Diagnosis is based on history, physical examination, and sometimes renal biopsy Renal biopsy Biopsy of the urinary tract requires a trained specialist (nephrologist, urologist, or interventional radiologist). Indications for diagnostic biopsy include unexplained nephritic or nephrotic... read more . Treatment and prognosis vary by cause.

  • Acute (serum creatinine rises over many weeks or less)

  • Chronic (renal insufficiency may progress over years)

Nephritic syndrome can also be

  • Primary (idiopathic)

  • Secondary

Table
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Acute glomerulonephritis

Chronic glomerulonephritis

Drugs Mentioned In This Article

Drug Name Select Trade
No US brand name
GEMZAR
MITOSOL
PLATINOL
QUALAQUIN
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Metabolic Nephropathies
Several metabolic disturbances can cause tubulointerstitial nephritis. Acute urate nephropathy is not a true form of acute tubulointerstitial nephritis but rather an intraluminal obstructive uropathy. The most common cause of this type of nephropathy is which of the following?
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