- Glomerulonephritis, an inflammation of the glomeruli. About 7 to 15% of people with glomeruonephritis (inflammation) develop glomerulosclerosis (scarring).
- Reflux nephropathy (backward flow of the urine up to the kidney).
- Kidney-harming chemicals or medicines that damage the glomeruli.
- Heroin use.
- Inherited genetic problems.
- Reflux nephropathy (a condition in which urine flows backward from the bladder to the kidney).
- Sickle cell disease.
- Blood test: Your kidney function will be evaluated using the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). Your GFR number is calculated from a math equation that considers the results from a blood test that combines your blood creatinine level, your age, gender and race. People with glomerulosclerosis can have a low GFR, as their kidney damage progresses and kidney function decreases.
- Urine tests: Your doctors will order urine tests for protein or red blood cells. Having large amounts of protein appearing in the urine (proteinuria) is common in glomerulosclerosis. Blood in the urine is a warning sign of kidney disease.
- Biopsy: Having a low GFR and protein in the urine is not proof of glomerulosclerosis, though. Since these are associated with other kidney conditions, a kidney biopsy is needed to diagnose glomerulosclerosis. In this procedure, a needle is used to take a tiny sample of the kidney to examine with a microscope. The diagnosis is made from the signs of scarring seen on the kidney tissue sample.
- Glomerulosclerosis can cause nephrotic syndrome. Nephrotic syndrome means very high levels of protein in the urine, low blood protein levels, high cholesterol levels, and swelling.
- Your age, overall health, and medical history.
- Extent of the disease.
- Your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies.
- Expectations for the course of the disease.
- Your opinion or preference.
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