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Isr Med Assoc J. 2002 Mar;4(3):191-5.

Oligonephropathy: from a rare childhood disorder to a possible health problem in the adult.

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1
alfred@cc.huji.ac.il

Abstract

Recent data have shed significant new light on the structural and functional development of the kidneys, as well as on a rare congenital form of bilateral renal hypoplasia called congenital oligomeganephronia. In this renal disorder, few greatly enlarged and "hard-working" nephrons are found that will ultimately sclerose and lead to end-stage renal failure during early childhood. At the same time it has been recognized that the number of nephrons in the kidneys of various animal species and humans is correlated to renal mass. Therefore, premature babies and/or infants small for gestational age due to intrauterine malnutrition will be born with relatively small kidneys and a certain nephron deficit, a condition called congenital oligonephropathy. Extensive worldwide epidemiologic studies have now shown that these premature or SGA infants have a high incidence of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes and renal failure in adulthood. Although the pathophysiologic mechanisms responsible for these complications of premature birth are not entirely understood, it has become clear that the described association may pose a possible health problem in the adult population. This review describes the background of COMN and CON as well as the evidence that has accumulated on the adult complications of the latter. In addition, some thoughts are presented on the importance of identifying subjects possibly affected by CON, such that early recognition may alter the ultimate outcome.

PMID:
11908261
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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