Pediatric Nephrology

Pediatric nephrology deals specifically with the diagnosis and care of children with kidney or urologic (urinary) problems. The Pediatric Nephrology Department at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital is a leader in diagnosing and treating infants, children and teens with kidney (renal) problems, including both acute and chronic disorders.

With a focus on your child’s needs as they grow and develop, we provide comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services, as well as consultative services for children, including:

  • Renal biopsy
  • Acute and chronic hemodialysis
  • Acute and chronic peritoneal dialysis (peritoneal training program)
  • Acute hemofiltration
  • Renal transplantation
  • Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring

Our doctors, nurses, dieticians and social workers believe the best care is timely and consistent, and develops over time to meet the unique needs of your child and family. Along with excellent treatment, we provide you the follow-up care and support including a summer camp for children on dialysis, counseling, and activities to help your child get the most out of treatment and life.

In 2017, Cardinal Glennon’s neprology program was ranked one of the best in country by the U.S. News & World Report. Our kidney transplant program has consistently achieved extremely high survival rates with our staff continues to exceed all quality benchmarks.

How the Kidneys Work

The kidneys are the two bean-shaped organs on either side of the abdomen that help your body control water levels and eliminate waste through urine. Acting as your body’s filtering system, your kidneys also help regulate blood pressure, red blood cell production, and the levels of calcium and minerals in the body.

Injury, infection, high blood pressure, and genetic problems can cause damage to your kidneys, resulting in decreased function, kidney disease, or kidney failure. Some of these problems can be diagnosed and treated before a baby is born while others may appear later in a child’s life.

If your child is at risk of kidney problems, doctors will order urine tests, blood tests, imaging studies, and in some cases, a biopsy, to determine the health of your child’s kidneys and next steps in your child’s care.

Conditions We Treat

Families across the region count on us to deliver exceptional care and advanced treatment of renal diseases and other kidney problems. Combining sophisticated diagnostics with state-of-the-art clinical skills, we treat the following conditions:

  • Congenital and hereditary disorders involving the kidney and urinary tract
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Kidney stones
  • Hypertension
  • Acute and chronic glomerular and tubular disorders
  • Renal diseases caused by systemic lupus erythematosus, diabetes mellitus and vasculitis

Consultative Services & Clinics

The Nephrology Department at Cardinal Glennon offers regularly scheduled consultative services for dialysis, kidney transplant, and hypertension.

Pediatric Dialysis Unit

Pediatric dialysis is always available. Our dedicated unit offers hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis, dialysis to inpatients with portable dialysis machines, and education for families who choose to dialyze at home. If your child requires dialysis, they will see a specialized team focused on their medical, emotional and social needs. This team includes:

  • Pediatric dialysis doctors
  • Certified pediatric nurse practitioners
  • Social workers and dietitians
  • Child life specialists

The Renal Transplantation Program

With extremely high survival rates and excellent outcomes, our transplant program is one of the best in the country. The program also meets Medicare’s health and safety standards (CMS-certified) and is one of 16 kidney transplant clinics participating in the Improving Renal Outcomes Collaborative (IROC).

Comprehensive Hypertension Program

For the ongoing treatment of hypertension, the Comprehensive Hypertension Program provides a weekly clinic and regular follow-up and support for children in the ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) program.

Research on Chronic Kidney Disease

Our SLUCare Physician Group nephrologists at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine participate in two studies funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The studies are designed to better treat glomerular diseases, chronic kidney, and end stage renal disease (ESRD) in children. To refer a patient to this program, call 314-577-5662.


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