JOURNAL ARTICLE

[Nephrocalcinosis in children]

Catherine Monet-Didailler, Jean-François Chateil, Lise Allard, Astrid Godron-Dubrasquet, Jérôme Harambat
Néphrologie & Thérapeutique 2021, 17 (1): 58-66
33461896
Nephrocalcinosis is defined by calcium phosphate or calcium oxalate deposits in the kidney parenchyma, particularly in tubular epithelial cells and interstitial tissue. It should be differentiated from urolithiasis where calcium salts deposits are located in the kidney and urinary tract. The epidemiology of nephrocalcinosis in children is unknown but the condition is not so rare, with an increased incidence in preterm infants. Often detected as an incidental finding, nephrocalcinosis may be classified according to the radiological type: medullary, cortical or diffuse. Nephrocalcinosis in children can be caused by a variety of etiology. The most common causes concern medullary nephrocalcinosis and include hereditary tubular disorders, in particular distal renal tubular acidosis and Dent disease, metabolic disorders such as idiopathic hypercalciuria and hyperoxaluria, and iatrogenic causes such as vitamin D intoxication. In the newborn, the main cause is hypercalciuria of the premature baby, whose multifactorial origin is largely iatrogenic. Primary hyperoxaluria which can lead to early onset nephrocalcinosis and usually to chronic kidney disease should always be considered and further investigated. In order to provide a specific diagnosis, it is essential to take into account the family history, the clinical context and complete laboratory data. Early initiation of an appropriate etiological treatment is recommended and may prevent or delay the progression to chronic kidney disease in some cases.

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