BMC Nephrol. 2022 Jun 17;23(1):214. doi: 10.1186/s12882-022-02846-z.
BACKGROUND: Lupus nephritis (LN) is the most common severe complication of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) which results in high morbidity and mortality. Up to 60% of adult patients with SLE develop the renal disease with different severity. Even with potent anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive therapies, many LN patients still progress to chronic kidney disease or end-stage renal disease. Thus, this study aimed to assess the management practice, treatment outcomes and to identify the associated factors of poor renal outcome in adult LN patients at the renal clinic of St. Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
METHODS: A retrospective cross-sectional study design was used to collect the data using an abstraction tool from patients’ records. The Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) criteria were used to diagnose LN among SLE patients. Logistic regression was used to determine crude and adjusted odds ratio and a p-value of < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Ethical approval was obtained from the ethical review committee of the School of Pharmacy, Addis Ababa University and institutional review board of St. Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College.
RESULTS: Out of 168 study participants enrolled from September 1, 2016 to October 30, 2020, a total of 114 adult LN patients were included for final analysis. The mean (± SD) age of the LN patients at onset was 29.10 ± 9.67 years and 99 (86.8%) of all the patients were females. More than three-fourths (78.9%) of the LN patients had a good prognosis. However, 24 (21.1%) of the patients who didn’t achieve complete or partial remission had a poor prognosis. A kidney biopsy was done for 71 patients at initial presentation with class IV and III as the commonest class. The commonly prescribed immunosuppressive medications were cyclophosphamide as induction therapy in 67 (58.7%) and mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) as maintenance therapy in 76 (66.7%). Gastrointestinal intolerances like abdominal pain, nausea, or diarrhea from MMF were the most common 27(31.2%) treatment-related adverse events reported. Acute kidney injury (AKI) at onset (AOR = 4.83, P = 0.026), high serum creatinine (SCr) at six months (AOR = 0.12, P = 0.003), no response at six months to attain complete remission (AOR = 0.05, P = 0.041) and presence of flare (AOR = 0.04, P = 0.004) were predictors poor treatment outcomes.
CONCLUSION: Despite good response with the present immunosuppressive regimens, relapse, treatment-related complications and adverse events are major problems that require close monitoring. The results and identified gaps of this study are used as an input to improve the management practice of LN in the study setting. Overall, this study is comparable with other findings and strengthen the present available literatures.