The spectrum of glomerulonephritis in saudi arabia: the results of the saudi registry

Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl. Jul-Sep 2000;11(3):434-41.


Only few studies regarding glomerulonephritis, with relatively small numbers of patients, have so far been published from different centers in Saudi Arabia, and have reported conflicting results regarding the patterns, even in the same city. The possible reasons for these differences include the small number of patients in the different studies, differences in the indications for renal biopsies, referral bias, geographical differences, and, sometimes, the non-availability of the necessary diagnostic facilities in the reporting centers. In order to overcome these problems, a registry for glomerulonephropathy was attempted in Saudi Arabia. Six large referral hospitals from different regions of Saudi Arabia participated in this registry. Biopsy reports and clinical information of 1294 renal biopsies were obtained. There were 782 renal biopsies due to glomerulonephritis (GN) accounting for 77.2% of the total biopsies. Five hundred eighty seven (72.6%) were primary glomerulonephritidis. Focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) (21.3%) and membrano-proliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN) (20.7%) were the most common types found in the primary glomerulonephritidis. Membranous glomerulonephritis (MGN) was present in only 10.6% of the cases. IgA nephropathy was found in 6.5% of the cases. Of the secondary glomerulo-nephritides, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) was the most common indication for biopsy (57.0%) and amyloidosis was found in only 3.2% of the biopsies. In conclusion, FSGS and MPGN were the most common forms of primary glomerulonephritis in adult patients in Saudi Arabia. MGN was not as common as in the western world. SLE was the commonest cause of secondary GN. Amyloidosis was not as common as in other Arab countries. There is a need for more centers from Saudi Arabia to join this national GN registry. Similar registries can be established in different Arab countries, which all would, hopefully, lead to a Pan-Arab GN registry.