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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 35

Simplified algorithm for evaluation of proteinuria in clinical practice: How should a clinician approach?

1 Department of Pediatrics, Section of Nephrology, Semnan University of Medical Sciences, Semnan, Iran
2 Department of Pediatrics, Section of Nephrology, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA

Correspondence Address:
Farahnak Assadi
445 E. North Water Street, Suite 1804, Chicago, IL
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2008-7802.253424

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Background: Proteinuria is a common laboratory finding among children and adolescents. It can be identified as either a transient or a persistent finding and can represent a benign condition or a serious disease. Methods: Pertinent medical literature for asymptomatic proteinuria in children and adolescents published in English was searched between January 1980 and May 2017 using PubMed, MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Google Scholar research databases. Of the 64 reviewed articles, 24 studies were eligible for inclusion. Results: Random spot urine protein-to-creatinine (PCR) ratio is widely used to reliably detect proteinuria. The normal value for the spot PCR in children aged 2 years or older is less than 0.3. In children aged below 2 years, the PCR can be as high as 0.5. Orthostatic proteinuria is defined as urine PCR greater than 0.3 detected in a urine specimen during the daytime activity but less than 0.3 on the first morning void specimen. PCR above 3.0 signifies heavy proteinuria as seen in nephrotic syndrome. Orthostatic proteinuria is a frequent cause of proteinuria in asymptomatic children and adolescents, which require no specific therapy except for health maintenance follow-up. Pediatric nephrologist referral is indicated when the proteinuria is constant and persists over 6 months or is associated with hematuria, hypertension, or renal dysfunction. Conclusions: We provide a simplified diagnostic algorithm for evaluation of proteinuria in primary care adolescents who appear well and in whom proteinuria is incidentally discovered during a routine examination.

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