Renal Function and Morphology in Sudanese Patients with Advanced Hepatosplenic Schistosomiasis and Portal Hypertension

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  • Medizinische Hochschule Hannover, Federal Republic of Germany, University of Gezira, University of Khartoum, University of Basle, Wad Medani, Sudan
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The association between glomerular disease and hepatosplenic schistosomiasis is well documented in reports from South America. During the present hospital investigation in Sudan, 58 patients admitted for intercurrent complications of advanced hepatosplenic schistosomiasis were studied. The patients, median age 35 years, had no concurrent Schistosoma haematobium infection. Diagnostic criteria included an enlarged spleen (n = 58), at least 1 episode of hematemesis (n = 55) and/or melena (n = 36), endoscopical demonstration of gastroesophageal varices (29/29 studied), ultrasonographical imaging of hepatic periportal fibrosis (18/18 studied), and intraoperative liver biopsy with characteristic histological findings (11/16 biopsied). Serum creatinine, urea, electrolytes, cholesterol, total protein, and electrophoresis were within normal limits. Median urinary protein/creatinine ratio was 0.06 and thereby not significantly different from European reference values. Only 1 patient had proteinuria of 1.7 g/l. Minimal hematuria was found in 5 patients. Ten kidney biopsies were taken intraoperatively during a portal decompression procedure (Hassab operation). Light, immunofluorescence, and electron microscopy produced no evidence of glomerulonephritis. These findings indicate that S. mansoni induced nephrotic syndrome may be less frequent in Sudan than in South America. Renal involvement due to S. mansoni infection may therefore encompass geographical variances.