Identifying Causes of AKI

Identifying the cause of AKI can expedite and improve clinical management. Causes of AKI can be classified as pre-renal, intra-renal, or post-renal.21-23

  1. Pre-renal causes of kidney injury involve reduced blood flow to the kidneys due to decreased systemic circulation. Some medical conditions such as heart failure, excessive blood or fluid loss, or systemic diseases can lead to slowed blood flow to the kidneys.
  2. Intra-renal causes of kidney injury directly damage kidney tissue, resulting in impaired function. Various conditions and agents can produce such kidney damage.
  3. Post-renal causes of kidney injury usually involve blockage of the urinary tract. Several diseases and conditions can block urinary flow.

Causes of AKI22,23

Abbreviations: ACEi, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor; (a)HUS, (atypical) hemolytic uremic syndrome; AKI, acute kidney injury; ANCA, antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody; APS, antiphospholipid syndrome; ARB, angiotensin receptor blocker; ATN/AIN, acute tubular necrosis/acute interstitial nephritis; DIC, disseminated intravascular coagulation; EGPA, eosinophilic granulomatosis with polyangiitis; FSGS, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis; GN, glomerulonephritis; GPA, granulomatosis with polyangiitis; HELLP, (haemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, low platelet count) syndrome; HUS, hemolytic uremic syndrome; MPA, microscopic polyangiitis; MPGN, membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis; NSAID, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug; SIRS, systemic inflammatory response syndrome; TTP, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura.