[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Fractional excretion of sodium (FENa) has been used in the diagnosis of acute renal failure (ARF) to distinguish between the two main causes of ARF, prerenal state and acute tubular necrosis (ATN). However, many patients with prerenal disorders receive diuretics, which decrease sodium reabsorption and thus increase FENa. In contrast, the fractional excretion of urea nitrogen (FEUN) is primarily dependent on passive forces and is therefore less influenced by diuretic therapy.
To test the hypothesis that FEUN might be more useful in evaluating ARF, we prospectively compared FEUN with FENa during 102 episodes of ARF due to either prerenal azotemia or ATN.
Patients were divided into three groups: those with prerenal azotemia (N = 50), those with prerenal azotemia treated with diuretics (N = 27), and those with ATN (N = 25). FENa was low only in the patients with untreated plain prerenal azotemia while it was high in both the prerenal with diuretics and the ATN groups. FEUN was essentially identical in the two pre-renal groups (27.9 +/- 2.4% vs. 24.5 +/- 2.3%), and very different from the FEUN found in ATN (58.6 +/- 3.6%, P < 0.0001). While 92% of the patients with prerenal azotemia had a FENa <1%, only 48% of those patients with prerenal and diuretic therapy had such a low FENa. By contrast 89% of this latter group had a FEUN <35%.
Low FEUN (</=35%) was found to be a more sensitive and specific index than FENa in differentiating between ARF due to prerenal azotemia and that due to ATN, especially if diuretics have been administered.
Kidney International 01/2003; 62(6):2223-9. · 7.92 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study confirms in humans an age-related increase in plasma urea levels (r = 0.62; P < 0.001; y = 0.229x + 18.26) and no correlation between plasma creatinine and age (r = 0.06; NS). Fractional urea excretion (FE urea) decreases with age (r = -0.41; P < 0.001; y = -0.226x + 55). Comparing urea and creatinine clearances, measured in 19 young and in 15 old women, a larger decrease of urea clearance (-56%) compared with the creatinine clearance (-43%) was observed as expected, explaining the lower FE urea in the elderly. In old women, the daily urea excretion was 27% and the daily creatinine excretion was 42% lower than in young women. An age-related decrease of same magnitude in both creatinine production and creatinine clearance explains why plasma creatinine remains stable with increasing age. The observation of a more important decrease in urea clearance (56%) than in urea production (27%) in older women led to an expected increase in plasma urea of 29%. These observations incited a comparison of biochemical profiles from younger and older patients with the syndrome of inappropriate secretion of antidiuretic hormone (SIADH). Young patients with SIADH present lower mean plasma urea (18 +/- 8 mg/dl) and higher mean FE urea (58 +/- 14%), compared with both young control subjects (mean plasma urea 27 +/- 7 mg/dl; mean FE urea 46 +/- 10%) and old patients with SIADH (mean plasma urea 29 +/- 8 mg/dl; mean FE urea 44 +/- 15%). Physicians must realize that frankly low plasma urea values and high FE urea values can be expected only in young patients with SIADH, whereas old patients with SIADH will present values of plasma urea and FE urea in the same range than young control subjects. However, old patients with SIADH show still lower mean plasma urea values and higher mean FE urea values, compared with old control subjects (mean plasma urea 39 +/- 8 mg/dl; mean FE urea 36 +/- 9%), in whom plasma urea values between 40 and 50 mg/dl must be considered as usual.
Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 09/2006; 1(5):909-14. · 5.07 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Acute renal failure (ARF) is a frequent complication of sepsis and has a high mortality. Sepsis-induced ARF is known to be associated with significant impairment of tubular capacity. However, the pathogenesis of endotoxemic tubular dysfunction with failure of urine concentration is poorly understood. Urea plays an important role in the urinary concentrating mechanism and expression of the urea transporters UT-A1, UT-A2, UT-A3, UT-A4, and UT-B is essential for tubular urea reabsorption. The present study attempts to assess the regulation of renal urea transporters during severe inflammation in vivo. Lipopolysaccharide-(LPS)-injected mice presented with reduced glomerular filtration rate, fractional urea excretion, and inner medulla osmolality associated with a marked decrease in expression of all renal urea transporters. Similar alterations were observed after application of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha, interleukin (IL)-1beta, interferon (IFN)-gamma, or IL-6. LPS-induced downregulation of urea transporters was not affected in knockout mice with deficient TNF-alpha, IL-receptor-1, IFN-gamma, or IL-6. Glucocorticoid treatment inhibited LPS-induced increases of tissue TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, IFN-gamma, or IL-6 concentration, diminished LPS-induced renal dysfunction, and attenuated the downregulation of renal urea transporters. Renal ischemia induced by renal artery clipping did not influence the expression of urea transporters. Our data demonstrate that renal urea transporters are downregulated by severe inflammation, which likely accounts for tubular dysfunction. Furthermore, they suggest that the downregulation of renal urea transporters during LPS-induced ARF is mediated by proinflammatory cytokines and is independent from renal ischemia because of sepsis-induced hypotension.
American journal of physiology. Renal physiology 06/2007; 292(5):F1479-89. · 3.61 Impact Factor
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