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Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi. 2013 Dec 24;93(48):3826-30.

[Analysis of associated factors for remission and relapse in proliferative and membranous lupus nephritis patients: a 4-year follow-up study].

[Article in Chinese]

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Department of Nephrology, Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200127, China.
Department of Nephrology, Ren Ji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200127, China. Email:



To explore the related factors of remission and relapse in lupus nephritis (LN) patients.


A retrospective study was conducted for proliferation and membrane LN patients diagnosed from 2003 to 2010. Their clinical, laboratory and pathological parameters were collected. According to the response to treatment, they were divided into 3 groups of complete remission (CR), partial remission (PR) and no response (NR). Those in remission were divided into 2 groups of relapsing and non-relapsing during maintenance period. Associated factors for remission and relapse were analyzed.


(1) Among a total of 105 patients, there were 99 females and 6 males with an average follow-up period of (51 ± 30) months. Eighty-six patients achieved remission after 6-month treatment. (2) The outcomes were CR (n = 36), PR (n = 50) and NR (n = 19). Proteinuria in PR group was higher than that in CR group (4.7 (3.1-7.6) vs 1.7 (1.4-3.8), P < 0.01) while proteinuria of CR group was lower than that of NR group (1.7 (1.4-3.8) vs 3.0 (2.3-5.9), P < 0.01). Serum albumin level of CR group was significantly higher than those of PR (30.6 (27.8-34.6) vs 22.4 (19.3-29.4), P < 0.01) and NR groups (30.6 (27.8-34.6) vs 23.1 (18.9-28.6), P < 0.01). Serum creatinine was significantly higher in NR group than those of CR (128.9 (69.9-184.3) vs 58.1 (53.0-70.9), P < 0.01) and PR group (128.9 (69.9-184.3) vs 67.5 (53.5-129.1), P < 0.05). Acute index (AI) and chronic index (CI) were lower in CR group than those of PR and NR groups. (3) A total of 86 cases achieved remission (CR/PR) while 20 cases (23.3%) had relapse. During the maintenance period, the relapse rate was higher in the group on prednisone alone than those on combined therapy of prednisone plus immunosuppressant (P < 0.05). Sixty patients (90.9%) in non-relapse group and 12 cases (60.0%) in recurrence group had good compliance.


Initial proteinuria, serum creatinine, serum albumin, estimated glomerular filtration rate and AI were related with remission of induction period. Prednisone-alone therapy is an independent risk factor for relapse during maintenance period. Poor compliance of patients may be one of the risk factors for relapse during maintenance period. It may be useful to maintain sustained remission and reduce relapse in LN patients by improving their compliance and using steroids plus immunosuppressant during maintenance period.

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