Nephrotic Syndrome

The kidneys continuously filter blood and produce urine to remove waste products, salts, and excess fluid. Each kidney is made up of approximately one million tiny filters called "glomeruli.” Much as a coffee filter keeps coffee grounds in, glomeruli keep valuable cells and protein in the blood.

When glomeruli become damaged, proteins begin leaking into the urine (proteinuria). Proteinuria and low blood proteins allow fluid to leak out of the blood stream to other part of the body, causing swelling. Prolonged leakage can lead to kidney damage and even failure. Nephrotic syndrome is a collection of signs and symptoms that occur when glomeruli are damaged.

Nephrotic syndrome can be persistent, improve (remission) or cycle between remission and active (relapse) periods. As with any disease, there are two components for the person who has it. First, there is the physical side of the disease and second, how it affects a person emotionally. We do research to look for causes of nephrotic syndrome and to try and identify more effective treatments. We are also doing research to see how patients feel when they are having an active flare of nephrotic syndrome versus when they are in remission.

Primary Nephrotic Syndrome Conditions

  • Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS)
  • IgM Nephropathy
  • Membranous Nephropathy
  • Minimal Change Disease
  • C1q Nephropathy