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Clin Exp Nephrol. 2012 Jun;16(3):485-9. doi: 10.1007/s10157-012-0606-6. Epub 2012 Feb 18.

Accelerated recovery from nephrotic syndrome with acute renal failure by double filtration plasmapheresis in a patient with lupus podocytopathy.

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  • 1Division of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, Jichi Medical University, Shimotsuke, Tochigi, Japan. iwazu@jichi.ac.jp


We describe a case of an adult female who presented with nephrotic syndrome. She was diagnosed with systemic lupus erythematosus with serum antinuclear antibodies, leucopenia with lymphopenia, butterfly erythema, and nephrotic syndrome. Renal biopsy revealed normal glomeruli with diffuse effacement of the foot processes, consistent with lupus podocytopathy. Although human albumin replacement was performed initially, acute renal failure developed rapidly. Therefore, she was treated with double filtration plasmapheresis (DFPP) in addition to oral steroid. After steroid therapy combined with DFPP, the renal function and proteinuria improved rapidly. Although the impact of DFPP on the treatment of lupus nephritis remains to be delineated, our observations suggest that DFPP in lupus podocytopathy played a pivotal role in facilitating the early recovery from renal injuries. Because of the rapid improvement of renal function without any change in body weight by DFPP, acute renal failure in the setting of lupus podocytopathy might contribute to an alternative pathophysiological factor for the diminished glomerular filtration rate, similar to that observed in the setting of idiopathic minimal change glomerulopathy.

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