Division of Pediatric Nephrology, Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 2015 Uppergate Drive Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30322-1015, USA. Electronic address: [Email]
Nephrotic syndrome is characterized by edema, proteinuria, hypoalbuminemia, and hyperlipidemia. Minimal change disease, the most common cause in childhood, generally responds to corticosteroids, although most patients experience disease relapses. Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis is usually resistant to corticosteroids and carries a significant risk of kidney failure, necessitating renal transplantation. Nephrotic syndrome may also be secondary to gene mutations and systemic diseases such as lupus. Clinical evaluation involves distinguishing primary and secondary causes and monitoring for disease complications, including blood clots and serious infections such as spontaneous bacterial peritonitis. Immunosuppressive medications are used to prevent relapses and treat corticosteroid-resistant disease.