What are the criteria for starting corticosteroids prior to kidney biopsy in children with nephrotic syndrome?

Updated: Mar 04, 2020
  • Author: Jerome C Lane, MD; Chief Editor: Craig B Langman, MD  more...
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A trial of corticosteroids is the first step in the treatment of idiopathic nephrotic syndrome (INS) in which kidney biopsy is not initially indicated. Thus, patients may be considered for steroid treatment prior to kidney biopsy if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Age 1-12 years

  • Normal kidney function

  • No macroscopic (gross) hematuria

  • No symptoms of systemic disease (fever, rash, joint pain, weight loss)

  • Normal complement levels

  • Negative antinuclear antibody (ANA) assay

  • Negative viral screens (ie, for human immunodeficiency virus [HIV], hepatitis B and C viruses)

  • No family history of kidney disease

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