Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Reflux Nephropathy Overview

What is reflux nephropathy?
A person with reflux nephropathy has abnormal, backward flow of urine from the bladder into the kidneys. The cause for reflux nephropathy is unknown. Normally, the ureter does not allow urine to flow from the bladder to the kidney. In someone with reflux nephropathy, the valves in the ureter do not function properly, and urine flows backward from the bladder, through the ureters, and into the kidneys. This can lead to kidney infections or kidney disease.

What are the symptoms of reflux nephropathy?
Reflux nephropathy does not cause symptoms. However, reflux nephropathy can lead to kidney infections or kidney failure, which causes symptoms.

How does the doctor treat reflux nephropathy?
Treatment for reflux nephropathy may include antibiotics to prevent kidney infections, medications that relax the bladder, and surgery.

Continue to Reflux Nephropathy Incidence

Last Updated: Aug 30, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Reflux Nephropathy References
  1. Capozza N, Patricolo M, Lais A, Matarazzo E, Caione P. Endoscopic treatment of vesico-ureteral reflux: twelve years' experience. Urol Int. 2001;67(3):228-31. [11598451]
  2. Smellie JM, Barratt TM, Chantler C, Gordon I, Prescod NP, Ransley PG, Woolf AS. Medical versus surgical treatment in children with severe bilateral vesicoureteric reflux and bilateral nephropathy: a randomised trial. Lancet. 2001 Apr 28;357(9265):1329-33. [11343739]
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