Mycophenolate mofetil in the treatment of resistant idiopathic nephrotic syndrome

Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2002 Nov;17(11):2011-3. doi: 10.1093/ndt/17.11.2011.


Background: A small proportion of patients with initially steroid-sensitive nephrotic syndrome relapse frequently, despite treatment with cyclophosphamide and/or cyclosporin. We investigated the efficacy of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) in this group.

Methods: Seven patients with nephrotic syndrome due to minimal change nephropathy (MCN) or classical focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) who had suffered multiple relapses over many years despite treatment with several different agents were commenced on MMF 1 g twice daily, together with a reducing dose of corticosteroids.

Results: Six patients went into complete remission and the seventh into partial remission. At 1 year, five remained in complete remission. The median (range) serum albumin concentration rose from 19 g/l (16-42 g/l) pre-MMF to 42 g/l (25-45 g/l) after 12 months (P=0.023), and the median (range) dose of prednisolone fell from 40 mg/day (30-60 mg/day) to 7.5 mg/day (0-40 mg/day) at 12 months (P=0.0008).

Conclusion: MMF appears to be of benefit in the treatment of multiply relapsing nephrotic syndrome caused by MCN or FSGS. Controlled trials are required to establish the role of MMF in these disorders.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Glomerulosclerosis, Focal Segmental / complications
  • Glucocorticoids / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycophenolic Acid / analogs & derivatives
  • Mycophenolic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Nephrosis, Lipoid / complications
  • Nephrotic Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Nephrotic Syndrome / etiology
  • Prednisolone / administration & dosage
  • Recurrence
  • Remission Induction
  • Serum Albumin / analysis


  • Glucocorticoids
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Serum Albumin
  • Prednisolone
  • Mycophenolic Acid