Current trends in the management of acute kidney injury in children
Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) previously known as acute renal failure (ARF) is a common problem in the paediatric emergency wards with infections like
sepsis and malaria being the commonest causes in Nigeria. It has been known by various nomenclatures with a lack of standardised definition. This has made comparison of data very difficult. In the last decade, attempts have been made to standardize the definition by developing a classification criterion termed “RIFLE”. This is in turn undergoing various
modifications with the most recent classification system developed by the Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO). Despite these interesting developments, the basis of these classifications which is the use of serum creatinine measurements is fraught with its own limitations.
This has led to discovery of various urinary and serum biomarkers like the cystatin C and neutrophil gelatinase associated lipocalin (NGAL) which appear to have very promising advantages over the well known creatinine measurements. Management of AKI continues to be anticipatory with appropriate fluid therapy and adequate treatment of infections. The benefits of furosemide and dopamine in management are still a constant source of debate. Treatment of life threatening complications like hyperkalaemia and hypertension as well as maintaining the kidney through the period of non-function can lead to remarkable recovery of renal homeostatic function.
Keywords: acute kidney injury, paediatrics, management