The paucity of minimal change disease in adolescents with primary nephrotic syndrome
Data are sparse regarding the histological lesions associated with the primary nephrotic syndrome in adolescents. To our knowledge there are only two published articles that have specifically addressed the histopathological lesions that typify idiopathic nephrotic syndrome in the adolescent population. We reviewed our experience from the last 14 years of children between the ages of 12 and 18 years who were referred to our center for the evaluation of the nephrotic syndrome. A total of 29 adolescents met the inclusion criteria for this review. All patients were biopsied prior to the initiation of treatment. The sex ratio consisted of 52% males and 48% females and the racial breakdown was largely African-American, with 83% black adolescents, 7% Hispanic, and 10% Caucasian patients. Minimal change nephrotic syndrome (MCNS), the predominant lesion of children at an early age, was noted in only 20% of patients. The majority of patients (55.2%) had focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS); 7% had IgM nephropathy and 3.5% had diffuse mesangial hypercellularity. Only 7% of biopsied adolescents had membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis. Our results indicate that the most common lesion in this predominantly African-American patient population is FSGS, with only a small number showing MCNS. Thus, in our experience derived from a racially mixed population, adolescents with the nephrotic syndrome are less likely to have MCNS than younger children.
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