• epidemiology;
  • glomerulonephritis;
  • nephrotic syndrome;
  • renal biopsy


Aim:  In the absence of a national renal biopsy registry, there is a paucity of information on the pattern of renal disease observed in native renal biopsies in adults in Pakistan.

Methods:  A retrospective review of native renal biopsies performed in adult patients was undertaken at the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT) during the period from July 1995 to December 2008. Renal biopsies were studied by light, immunoflourescence and electron microscopy. The renal biopsy diagnoses were categorized into the following groups: glomerulopathies (GN), tubulointerstitial diseases (TID), renal vascular diseases (VD), and hereditary diseases (HD).

Results:  A total of 1793 adult patients were included in the study. GN was the commonest diagnosis representing 83.9% of all biopsies. Primary GN (PGN) accounted for 86.9% and secondary GN (SGN) for 13%. When PGN was further analyzed, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) was the leading histopathological diagnosis, found in 29% of PGN, followed by membranous GN (MGN), seen in 23.5% of cases. Among SGN, lupus nephritis (44.1%) was the commonest, followed by amyloidosis (42.1%) and diabetic nephropathy (8.1%). TID comprised 11.6% of all renal biopsy diagnoses. VD and HD were less frequent, found in 3.9% and 0.4%, respectively.

Conclusion:  The pattern of biopsied renal pathology is similar to that reported recently from other parts of the world with similar biopsy indications.