Glomerulonephritis (gloe-mer-u-low-nuh-FRY-tis) is inflammation of the tiny filters in your kidneys (glomeruli). Glomeruli remove excess fluid, electrolytes and waste from your bloodstream and pass them into your urine. Glomerulonephritis can come on suddenly (acute) or gradually (chronic).
Glomerulonephritis signs and symptoms
Pink or cola-colored urine from red blood cells in your urine (hematuria)
Foamy urine due to excess protein (proteinuria)
High blood pressure (hypertension)
Fluid retention (edema) with swelling evident in your face, hands, feet and abdomen.
The acute disease may be caused by infections such as strep throat. It may also be caused by other illnesses, including lupus, Goodpasture's syndrome, Wegener's disease, and polyarteritis nodosa.
Urine test - A urinalysis might show red blood cells and red cell casts in your urine, an indicator of possible damage to the glomeruli. Urinalysis results might also show white blood cells, a common indicator of infection or inflammation, and increased protein, which can indicate nephron damage. Other indicators, such as increased blood levels of creatinine or urea, are red flags.
Blood tests - These can provide information about kidney damage and impairment of the glomeruli by measuring levels of waste products, such as creatinine and blood urea nitrogen.Imaging tests. If your doctor detects evidence of damage, he or she may recommend diagnostic studies that allow visualization of your kidneys, such as a kidney X-ray, an ultrasound examination or a CT scan.
Kidney biopsy - This procedure involves using a special needle to extract small pieces of kidney tissue for microscopic examination to help determine the cause of the inflammation. A kidney biopsy is almost always necessary to confirm a diagnosis of glomerulonephritis.
Diet - Limit the amount of protein, potassium, phosphorus, and salt you eat. Reduce the amount of fluids you drink. Eat healthy foods and get plenty of exercise.