Comparison of pulse and oral steroid in childhood membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis

J Nephrol. 2007 Mar-Apr;20(2):234-45.


Background: There has been no controlled study comparing efficacy of pulse versus oral steroid therapy in childhood membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN). This study aimed to compare these therapies and renal outcome over a long-term period for MPGN.

Methods: Outcome measures in 11 patients with MPGN treated with pulse methylprednisolone (MP) were compared with 8 patients with MPGN treated with oral prednisolone (P).

Results: Nineteen children with idiopathic MPGN (mean age 9.75 years, range 3.7-14 years) were followed for a mean period of 68.21 months (range 4-124 months). Both treatment groups were similar in demographic, clinical, laboratory and histopathological characteristics on presentation. In the pulse MP group, only 1 patient out of 11 progressed to end-stage renal failure (ESRF), compared with 4 patients out of 8 in the oral P group (p=0.041). For long-term renal survival, those patients with more than 8 years of follow-up were further evaluated. Twelve patients had completed 8 years of follow-up; in the pulse MP group, 1 of 7 patients, compared with 4 of 5 patients in the oral P group progressed to ESRF (p=0.039). Chronic damage in the presentation biopsy and lack of remission in patients with nephrotic syndrome (NS) were positively associated with adverse renal outcome (p=0.02, p=0.006, respectively).

Conclusions: Pulse MP therapy may be superior to oral P therapy in children with MPGN in preserving renal function without any increase in steroid-related side effects. Chronic damage in the presentation biopsy and lack of remission of NS are adverse features.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Disease Progression
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glomerulonephritis, Membranoproliferative / complications
  • Glomerulonephritis, Membranoproliferative / drug therapy*
  • Glucocorticoids / administration & dosage*
  • Glucocorticoids / adverse effects
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / etiology
  • Male
  • Methylprednisolone / administration & dosage*
  • Methylprednisolone / adverse effects
  • Methylprednisolone / therapeutic use
  • Nephrotic Syndrome / complications
  • Nephrotic Syndrome / pathology
  • Proteinuria / etiology
  • Pulse Therapy, Drug
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Glucocorticoids
  • Serum Albumin
  • Cholesterol
  • Methylprednisolone