Antiglomerular basement membrane antibody-mediated glomerulonephritis after intranasal cocaine use

Nephron. 1999;81(4):434-8. doi: 10.1159/000045328.


We report a case of rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis due to antiglomerular basement membrane (anti-GBM) antibodies that progressed to end-stage renal disease in a 35-year-old man who used intranasal cocaine on an occasional basis. In contrast to many prior reports of acute renal failure occurring with cocaine-associated rhabdomyolysis, this patient did not have any evidence of acute muscle damage and myoglobin release. Circulating anti-GBM antibodies and renal biopsy with linear IgG and C3 deposits confirmed the diagnosis of anti-GBM disease. The possibility of anti-GBM must be considered in the differential diagnosis of acute renal failure in cocaine addicts. This unusual combination raises complex questions regarding the pathogenesis of this type of renal injury.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Acute Kidney Injury / chemically induced
  • Acute Kidney Injury / pathology
  • Administration, Intranasal
  • Adult
  • Anti-Glomerular Basement Membrane Disease / chemically induced*
  • Anti-Glomerular Basement Membrane Disease / pathology*
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / pathology*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect
  • Glomerulonephritis / chemically induced*
  • Glomerulonephritis / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / metabolism
  • Kidney Glomerulus / pathology
  • Male


  • Immunoglobulin G