(glomerular nephritis, GN) n. inflammation of the glomeruli, although in practice the term is used for a number of glomerular conditions lacking microscopical signs of inflammation. For instance, membranous nephropathy is often referred to as membranous glomerulonephritis. GN may be a primary disease, restricted in its clinical manifestations to the kidney, or part of a multisystem disorder, such as systemic lupus erythematosus or vasculitis. Its presentation may be acute, with a nephritic or nephrotic syndrome; subacute, with rapidly declining renal function over a period of days or weeks; or chronic, with signs of the disease picked up on routine medical examination. Abnormalities of urine analysis are to be expected, with blood, protein, and casts present in variable amounts. Arterial hypertension is a common associated finding. GN is classified according to the different patterns of histological injury seen on renal biopsy specimens; these are examined by light and electron microscopy and by immunofluorescent studies.
Subjects: Medicine and Health.