Use of corticosteroids, other immunosuppressive therapies, and tonsillectomy in the treatment of IgA nephropathy

Semin Nephrol. 2004 May;24(3):244-55. doi: 10.1016/j.semnephrol.2004.01.005.


Because IgA nephropathy (IgAN) was originally regarded as a benign condition, the indication of corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive therapies have been highly restricted because of potential side effects, and such drugs have been used for a specific subgroup of patients with IgAN, taking the risk/benefit ratio into consideration. During the last decade, however, with the recognition that the overall long-term prognosis of IgAN is a nonbenign condition, more aggressive treatments, including high-dose corticosteroids, various immunosuppressive agents, and tonsillectomy, have been used for wider subgroups of patients with IgAN. Moreover, recent studies have suggested that clinical remission as well as histopathologic regression of the nephropathy could be obtained by such treatments if treatment is initiated in its relatively early stage. Thus, the possibility has now been raised that the goal of treatment for patients with IgAN will shift from "slowing the progression of nephropathy" to "remission of nephropathy."

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / drug therapy*
  • Glomerulonephritis, IGA / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Prognosis
  • Tonsillectomy*


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Immunosuppressive Agents