Nephritis

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Overview

Nephritis, or more commonly called, Glomerulonephritis, is inflammation of the glomeruli of the kidney. The glomeruli are tiny cup shaped filters, through which the waste from the plasma is filtered into the kidney so it can be excreted from the body via urine.

Causes

There are many conditions that can lead to glomerulonephritis, and are discussed below:

  • Infections (Post streptococcal throat infection glomerulonephritis, Bacterial endocarditis, viral infections)
  • Immune diseases (Lupus, Good pastures syndrome, IgA nephropathy)
  • Vasculitis
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetic nephropathy

Symptoms

The signs and symptoms of Glomerulonephritis are due to the dysfunctional filtering in the glomeruli. The glomeruli are supposed to keep RBCs, protein, and glucose in the plasma, and not filter into the kidney, but when they are inflamed, they cannot properly do that, which leads to RBCs, protein, and other substances enter the urine. This leads to the following symptoms:

  • Pink or cola colored urine, because of RBCs in the urine
  • Frothy/Foamy urine, because of protein in the urine
  • Hypertension
  • Edema, because of fluid retention in the body

Diagnosis

The following tests are good diagnostic tools for Glomerulonephritis:

  • Urine analysis
  • Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)
  • Urea Creatinine Electrolytes (UCE)
  • CT scan
  • X ray
  • Kidney biopsy

Treatment

The treatment plan is aimed at treating the underlying cause.

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