Urinary neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin rules out nephrotoxic acute kidney injury in children

Stuart L Goldstein, Kelli A Krallman, Alexandra Schmerge, Lynn Dill, Bradley Gerhardt, Praneeta Chodaparavu, Abigail Radomsky, Cassie Kirby, David J Askenazi
Pediatric Nephrology 2021 January 18

BACKGROUND: Nephrotoxic medication exposure is a common cause of acute kidney injury (AKI) in hospitalized children. A key component of the NINJA quality improvement initiative is systematic daily serum creatinine assessment in non-critically ill children exposed to ≥ 3 nephrotoxic medications on 1 day, or intravenous aminoglycoside or vancomycin for ≥ 3 days. Daily venipuncture is invasive and associated with disposable and personnel healthcare costs. Urine neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (uNGAL) is a marker of renal tubular injury associated with certain nephrotoxic medications. We investigated whether uNGAL is a reliable screening tool for AKI in NINJA and could decrease the need for daily venipuncture.

METHODS: This two-center prospective study enrolled 113 children who met NINJA criteria from May 2018 through March 2019. Daily urine samples were obtained for up to the first 7 days of qualifying exposure and 2 days after exposure ended. Our primary outcome was severe AKI (KDIGO stage 2 or 3 AKI). Maximum uNGAL was highest concentration on the day of, or 3 days prior to, severe AKI. The highest uNGAL level from all assessment days was used for patients who did not develop AKI or severe AKI.

RESULTS: Urine NGAL thresholds of 150 and 300 ng/ml demonstrated excellent specificity (92.4 and 97.1% respectively) and negative predictive values (93.3 and 92.8% respectively) for ruling out severe AKI.

CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that uNGAL could be used to supplant some of the daily serum creatinine venipunctures in NINJA. The most optimal combination of serum creatinine and uNGAL assessment requires further study.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"