What Is Nephrotic Syndrome?
Nephrotic Syndrome is a clinically diagnosed kidney disorder, which occurs when the functions of the kidney are disturbed due to increased excretion of protein in the urine that increases the permeability across the glomerular filtration barrier.
Excessive Proteinuria (proteinuria at least 3.5 grams per day per 1.73m2 body surface area) from the blood into the urine ultimately leads to the accumulation of fluid in the body resulting in edema (swelling in the face, legs, feet, & ankles) and hypoalbuminemia (low levels of the protein albumin) (serum albumin <3.0g/dL) and often high levels of fats (cholesterol and triglycerides) in the blood. This increases the tendency of blood clotting and greater susceptibility to catching an infection. The decreased level of albumin in the blood causes the fluid to leave the bloodstream and enter the tissues. Fluid leaving the bloodstream makes your kidneys compensate it by retaining more sodium.
Nephrotic Syndrome (“Nephros” meaning kidney and “Syndrome “denoting a group of symptoms) isn’t a disease itself, but a disorder which can be a result of the diseases which damages the blood vessels (filters waste and extra water from the blood) in the kidneys.
Nephrotic syndrome can develop gradually or suddenly. Nephrotic syndrome can occur at any age. It is most common in children between the ages of 18 months and 4 years, and, predominantly, the boys are affected more than the girls. In older people, both sexes are equally affected.
Homeopathic Treatment For Nephrotic Syndrome
As per our experience, conventional treatment alone is not enough to manage this chronic renal condition. Moreover, being a complex immunological condition, nephrotic syndrome cannot be cured, but it can be effectively managed with Homeopathic treatment.
Homeopathy treats Nephrotic Syndrome at the root level with internal medicine by using natural medicinal substances in ultra-minute quantities, thereby rendering a treatment that is extremely effective yet absolutely free from any side-effects whatsoever.
Homeopathic treatment not only helps in treating the damage done to the kidneys but also helps in slowing down the further damage of the kidneys. It aids in reducing the frequency, intensity, and duration of the episodes of Nephrotic Syndrome.
Homeopathic medicines also help to alleviate frequent infections, in turn, help in controlling the frequency of NS episodes. It is also possible to effectively reduce cortisone (steroids) dependency so that the patient may initially manage his or her smaller dose and, ultimately, manage without steroids.
Scope Of Homeopathy:
In early and milder cases of Nephrotic syndrome, homeopathic medicines can be used in isolation, yielding excellent results. However, in moderate to severe cases of Nephrotic syndrome, homeopathic medicines can be used in conjunction with conventional medicines to reduce further kidney damage and achieve symptomatic relief.
In severe cases of Nephrotic Syndrome, homeopathy plays a supportive role by reducing the frequency, severity, and duration of episodes by improving the function of the kidneys.
How Does Homeopathy Help In Treating Nephrotic Syndrome?
Homeopathic treatment helps to alleviate the discomforting nephrotic syndrome and improve your health in the following ways.
- Homeopathy regulates the autoimmune processes by strengthening the immune system.
- Homeopathy controls the protein-leakage, as it helps in correcting the glomerular function of the kidney.
- Homeopathy also aims to correct genetic tendencies.
- Homeopathy enhances immunity, thereby helps combat the frequent infections, such as colds, throat infections, etc. and this helps in reducing the attacks of Nephrotic Syndrome.
Homeopathic treatment works at the underlying multifactorial cause(s), i.e. the immunologically mediated parameters responsible for Nephrotic Syndrome; thereby treats the disease in such a way that the above health improvement targets are achieved.
Duration Of Homeopathic Treatment For Nephrotic Syndrome:
Nephrotic Syndrome is a chronic, obstinate, and reoccurring disease. There is no shortcut to treat it completely.
The length of the homeopathic treatment varies from case to case, depending on the following factors:
- Duration of nephrotic syndrome
- Frequency and severity of the episodes of nephrotic syndrome
- The extent of renal damage
- The underlying cause
- Overall immunological status of the patient
- Current and previous medications, such as cortisone and cyclophosphamide.
- General health and associated diseases
Prescribing Homeopathic Medicines For Nephrotic Syndrome:
Homeopathic medicines are selected according to certain guidelines and therefore, when they are administered to trigger the desired immune response, it helps to heal the process of tissue damage in the kidneys.
Homeopathic Medicines works well when prescribed after a detailed case study, as the prescription is based on individualized case taking. Self-medication is not advisable in chronic immunological renal condition like nephrotic syndrome. The methodology applied in treating the cases of Nephrotic Syndrome is clinically well-proven. Some of the commonly used homeopathic remedies are Eel Serum, Lycopodium clavatum, Phosphorus, Apis mellifica, and Carcinosin.
Our Experience In Treating Nephrotic Syndrome At Life Force
At Life Force, we have been treating cases of Nephrotic Syndrome for more than 30 years under the care of Dr. Rajesh Shah. We have carefully treated and documented over 3,000 cases of nephrotic syndrome across the world. Most of them get treated through online treatment protocol without even visiting our center.
Dr. Rajesh Shah’s research-based homeopathic molecules have changed the treatment protocol. These new molecules of medicines that have international patents must be credited to him for his research and efforts
What Happens In Nephrotic Syndrome? (Pathogenesis)
The edema formation mechanism in nephrotic syndrome is uncertain. The main flaw appears to be enhanced albumin and other plasma proteins and glomerular permeability.
The glomerulus of the kidney filters the blood that comes to the kidney. It consists of tiny pore capillaries which enable tiny molecules to pass through that have a molecular weight of lesser than 40,000 Daltons, but not bigger macromolecules, such as proteins.
In nephrotic syndrome, glomeruli are influenced by inflammation or hyalinization (the formation of a homogenous crystalline material within the cells) that enables proteins, such as albumin, antithrombin or immunoglobulins, to pass through the cell membrane and to appear in the urine. Albumin is a primary protein in the blood that can maintain an oncotic pressure that prohibits the fluid from leaking to the extracellular region.
The primary kidney retention and the decrease of hypoalbuminemia oncotic stress lead to enhanced extravasation of the liquid into interstitial space from intravascular space, thereby leading to edema.
The liver begins a compensatory mechanism for the synthesis of proteins, such as macroglobulins alpha-2 and lipoproteins, to react to hypoproteinemia. The hyperlipidemia connected with this syndrome can be due to increased hypoproteinemia.
In nephrotic syndrome, the thrombogenesis pathophysiology is also not fully understood but seems multifactorial with loose regulatory coagulation enzymes and a change in web equilibrium.
Prevalence Of Nephrotic Syndrome
Nephrotic syndrome, one of the most serious renal disorders, can affect children of any age, from infancy to adolescence, and is most commonly observed among the kids and adolescents of school-going age. In the first year of life, Nephrotic syndrome is uncommon. Typically, congenital nephrotic syndrome occurs in the first three months of life. An increased incidence is seen among the family members.
Global prevalence is approximately 16 cases per 100,000 population with an annual incidence of 2 to 7 per 100,000 children (out of which approximately 20% of patients are steroid-sensitive) and higher than 1 per 1 million cases of chronic renal failure in children. In children, the prevalence seems to be 2:1 ratio, boys more affected than girls, but the prevalence does not persist in adolescence.
60% to 90% of nephrotic syndrome instances in kids and most instances in kids under 7 years of age are Minimal Change Nephrotic syndrome (MCNS). Other diagnoses are becoming more common in elderly kids. Around 10% of kids with Nephrotic syndrome are represented by Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). FSGS may increase in incidence.
However, even with the access to therapy and drugs, the mortality rate among those with the most prevalent type of nephrotic syndrome is close to 2%.
Causes Of Nephrotic Syndrome
Nephrotic syndrome has multifactorial causes and might be the consequence of a glomerular disease that can be either confined to the kidney, called primary Nephrotic syndrome (primary glomerulonephrosis), or can occur as a condition which impacts the kidneys and other components of the body, called secondary Nephrotic syndrome.
Various primary kidney disorders can endanger the glomeruli and trigger Nephrotic syndrome. Minimal Change Disease (also called nil disease) is the most common cause of Nephrotic syndrome in kids.
Primary Nephrotic Syndrome:
The primary causes of Nephrotic syndrome are generally defined by histology as follows:
1. Minimal change nephrotic syndrome (MCNS)
2. Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS)
3. Membranous nephropathy (MN)
4. Membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN)
5. Rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis (RPGN)
These are deemed to be ‘diagnosis of exclusion’, i.e. they are identified only after secondary causes have been excluded.
Secondary Nephrotic Syndrome:
The types of Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome (MCNS) are defined by subtle modifications in the hypercellularity of the mesangial Cell or the deposition of certain immunoglobulins as IgM. The clinical importance of these entities, however, is uncertain. Adults with nephrotic syndrome may have IgA nephropathy, fibrillary, and immunotactoid glomerulonephritis.
Secondary causes include:
- Post-infectious glomerulonephritis
- Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
- Henoch-Schoenlein purpura
- Genetic disorders
- Drugs (e.g. Gold salts, Penicillin, Captopril, NSAIDs, Heroin)
- Infections (e.g. Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV)
- Malignancies (Hodgkin’s diseases)
Symptoms Of Nephrotic Syndrome
The most common sign of nephrotic syndrome is the presence of excess fluid in the body resulting due to the low levels of serum albumin which lowers the serum oncotic pressure causing fluid to build up in the interstitial tissues. Sodium and water retention make the edema worse. This may present in several forms, for instance, puffiness around the eyes, characteristically in the morning.
Some of the common symptoms of nephrotic syndrome are listed below.
- Puffiness or swelling around the eyes
- Pitting edema over the ankles
- Bubbly or frothy or foamy urine or blood in the urine
- Weight gain due to fluid build-up in the body
- Loss of Appetite
- Fatigue or malaise
- Abdominal pain
- Generalized edema
- Diarrhea resulting due to edema of the intestinal wall
- Decreased urine output
- Difficult respiration due to pulmonary edema, pleural effusions, or significant abdominal distention
- Headaches associated with hypertension
The Diagnosis Of Nephrotic Syndrome
The physician considers the symptoms, physical test results, and laboratory results for the diagnosis of Nephrotic syndrome. In elderly patients, initially, it might be misdiagnosed as heart failure instead of nephrotic syndrome, as both the illnesses can have a similar presentation when there is renal impairment.
The patients with edema and massive proteinuria, i.e. urine protein to creatinine ratio greater than 2 (mg: mg) in the first sample in the morning in children or 3.5 g/24 hours in adults, may be diagnosed for this condition. A 24-hour laboratory urine test can be used to measure the level of protein loss, but it is hard for many individuals to complete the urine collection throughout such a long period. Alternatively, to assess the loss of protein, the proportion of protein levels to creatinine (a waste product) can be evaluated by a single urine sample.
Further syndrome features are detected by blood tests and by other urinary tests. This essential protein is excreted into the urine and its development is impaired, so the blood albumin content is small. Cells that may combine with protein and fat (casts) often result in clumps in the urine. The urine may have low sodium levels and elevated potassium levels.
The blood lipid concentrations tend to be high, sometimes over 10 times the normal level. The urine also has elevated levels of lipid. There might be anemia affecting the patient. Protein levels may increase or decrease in blood clotting.
Cirrhosis, congestive cardiovascular or gastrointestinal illness (protein loss or malabsorption) is important to exclude before the edema is definitively attributed to kidney disease.
Determination of the cause of Nephrotic Syndrome
The doctor examines the possible causes of Nephrotic Syndrome. Urine and blood tests may reveal an underlying disorder. Blood is being screened to figure out the proof of prior Nephrotic syndrome diseases and the presence of antibodies against the body's very own tissues (called autoantibodies) which reveal an autoimmune disease.
An imaging test can be performed on the kidneys, such as ultrasound or CT scan. A search for cancer is conducted if the individual has lost weight or is older. The cause and extent of kidney damage can be determined with a kidney biopsy.
General Dietary Advice For Nephrotic Syndrome
Diet is essential for controlling Nephrotic syndrome. Restrict the amount of salt you consume to prevent the swelling and regulate your blood pressure. The doctor may also suggest reducing the swelling by drinking less fluid, as per the case study. If fluid builds up in your abdomen, you might need to eat tiny meals frequently because liquid decreases your stomach ability.
Nephrotic syndrome can raise cholesterol and triglyceride levels, so start eating a low-fat and low cholesterol diet. While this disease makes you lose protein in your urine, it is not advisable to eat additional protein. A diet high in protein may aggravate Nephrotic syndrome.
Conventional Treatment For Nephrotic Syndrome
Nephrotic syndrome can't be cured, but treatments can help you manage the symptoms and prevent further damage to the kidney. You will need dialysis or a renal transplant to live if your kidneys stop working.
Your doctor may ask you to take certain medications to treat the symptoms of Nephrotic syndrome.
- Blood stress and cholesterol control medicines can help reduce your likelihood of heart disease.
- Medicines to help remove additional water from your body can assist in regulating your blood pressure and reduce the swelling.
- Medicines can help prevent heart attacks and stroke by preventing blood clots.
If an individual with Nephrotic syndrome is already treated with an ACE or ARB inhibitor, the symptoms may reduce; the quantity and the level of fat in the blood that are excreted in the urine will generally decrease. However, in individuals with moderate to serious kidney failure, these drugs can boost blood potassium concentrations, which can cause possibly hazardous heart rhythm abnormalities.
High blood pressure is generally treated with diuretics. Diuretics can decrease the fluid retention and inflammation of the tissues but can also boost the danger of blood coagulation.
Clot formation may be treated with anticoagulants if they occur. Infections can threaten life and need immediate treatment.
Statins may be necessary when individuals have elevated levels of fats (lipids) in their blood.
Specific therapy is directed at the cause whenever possible. Treatment of an infection which causes nephrotic syndrome may alleviate the syndrome. If a treatable disease, such as diabetes, malaria, etc., create the syndrome, the treatment of the disease may eliminate the syndrome. In the early phases of a disease, if a heroin user with a Nephrotic syndrome stops using heroin, the syndrome may get resolved. If other drugs are accountable for the syndrome, it may be efficacious to stop the drugs. Such irritants should be avoided by people who are susceptible or allergic to poison oak, poison ivy, or insect bites.
When no reversible cause can be figured, the affected individual may be given corticosteroids and other drugs, such as cyclophosphamide, that suppress the immune system. However, corticosteroids cause problems, particularly in children, stunting the growth and suppressing sexual development.