What is the role of serum chemistry in the workup for chronic glomerulonephritis?

Updated: Feb 24, 2020
  • Author: Moro O Salifu, MD, MPH, FACP; Chief Editor: Vecihi Batuman, MD, FASN  more...
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Serum creatinine and urea nitrogen levels are elevated. Impaired excretion of potassium, free water, and acid results in hyperkalemia, hyponatremia, and low serum bicarbonate levels, respectively. Impaired vitamin D-3 production results in hypocalcemia, hyperphosphatemia, and high levels of parathyroid hormone. Low serum albumin levels may be present if uremia interferes with nutrition or if the patient is nephrotic.

Levels of fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) have been found to be significantly elevated in patients with CKD [12] and the high levels of FGF21 may explain the excess overall and cardiovascular mortality in patients with CKD. These adverse effects of elevated FGF21 are not clearly understood but research is under way to elucidate its biologic effects.

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