• Kebede Mola Addis Ababa University
  • Damte Shimelis Addis Ababa University


Background: Renal diseases are major causes of morbidity and mortality in pediatric practice. Pediatric patients with renal disease, especially younger ones may present with nonspecific signs and symptoms unrelated to the urinary tract. Unexplained fever or failure to thrive may be the only manifestation. Most children with renal diseases in our hospital arrive very late either because of inadequate health awareness among the parents or failure of recognizing the symptoms of renal diseases at a lower health care level. This review will highlight the symptoms of renal diseases at presentation and outcomes of treatment in children in a major referral hospital.

Methods: A cross-sectional retrospective chart review was done over a period of 3 years (June, 2012 to May, 2015) in 381 admitted children (Birth-17 years) at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Teaching Hospital in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Results: Out of 14521 pediatric ward admissions in the study period, kidney diseases accounted for 473 admissions in 381 children, accounting for 3.3% of all admissions. The three most common renal diseases observed were congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract (CAKUT) seen in 127 children (26.8%), followed by nephrotic syndrome in 80 children 16.9% and acute glomerulonephritis in 58 children (12.2%). Other renal diseases observed were urinary tract infection 8.0%, urolithiasis 6.7%, Wilm’s tumor 6.3%, acute kidney injury 4.2% and chronic kidney disease 4.0%. Other less frequently detected diseases were bladder exstrophy, lupus nephritis, Henock  shonlein Purpura nephritis and prune-belly syndrome.

Out of 381 children 207 (54.3%) recovered normal renal function, 20(5.2%) remained with proteinuria, 13(3.4%) progressed to chronic kidney disease and 11(2.9%) died. Sixty one nephrotic children (76.3%) achieved remission but 17 children (21.3%) remained with proteinuria; one steroid resistant child died of end stage renal disease. Ten children (2.6%) with different renal diseases were lost to follow-up and 5 (1.3%) discharged against medical advice.

Conclusions: This data reflects that many of the renal diseases are preventable or potentially curable. Therefore, improvement of pediatric renal services and training of health workers would help in early detection and treatment of these conditions leading to reduction in their morbidity and mortality.


Key Words: Renal disease, Children, Ethiopia


Author Biographies

Kebede Mola, Addis Ababa University

Department of Pediatrics and Child Health

Damte Shimelis, Addis Ababa University

Department of Pediatrics and Child Health



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Original Article