Objective: To evaluate factors with possible influence on the renal outcome in patients with lupus nephritis but without chronic renal insufficiency (CRI).
Methods: Renal biopsies from 94 patients were re-assessed with regard to WHO class, activity, chronicity and tubulointerstitial indices without knowledge of clinical features. The outcome parameters were CRI defined as irreversibly increased serum creatinine and renal end stage disease.
Results: The risk ratios (RR) of developing CRI were 2.6 for active urinary sediment, 3.1 for hyaline thrombi and 7.3 for glomerular leukocyte exudation. The RR of renal end stage disease was 5.0 when the duration of renal disease exceeded one year at the time of biopsy and 4.3 when biopsy disclosed a class IV lesion. Glomerular sclerosis was also associated to renal end stage disease.
Conclusion: Early renal biopsy and the abovementioned signs of active renal disease carry prognostic information that may have significant therapeutic implications.