History of nephrotic syndrome and evolution of its treatment

Abhijeet Pal, Frederick Kaskel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The recognition, evaluation, and early treatment of nephrotic syndrome in infants and children originate from physicians dating back to Hippocrates. It took nearly another 1000 years before the condition was described for its massive edema requiring treatment with herbs and other remedies. A rich history of observations and interpretations followed over the course of centuries until the recognition of the combination of clinical findings of foamy urine and swelling of the body, and measurements of urinary protein and blood analyses showed the phenotypic characteristics of the syndrome that were eventually linked to the early anatomic descriptions from first kidney autopsies and then renal biopsy analyses. Coincident with these findings were a series of treatment modalities involving the use of natural compounds to a host of immunosuppressive agents that are applied today. With the advent of molecular and precision medicine, the field is poised to make major advances in our understanding and effective treatment of nephrotic syndrome and prevent its long-term sequelae.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number56
JournalFrontiers in Pediatrics
Issue numberMAY
StatePublished - May 1 2016


  • Early recognition
  • Evaluation
  • Natural history
  • Nephrotic syndrome
  • Treatments

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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