- have liver problems
- plan to have surgery
- have chickenpox or measles or have recently been near anyone with chickenpox or measles
- have an infection
- have high blood sugar levels (prediabetes or diabetes)
- have glaucoma or cataracts
- have a family history of diabetes or glaucoma
- have or have had tuberculosis
- have high blood pressure (hypertension)
UNDERSTANDING THE GUT-KIDNEY CONNECTION IN IgA NEPHROPATHY (IgAN)
What is IgAN?
IgAN is an autoimmune disease, meaning a disease in which the bodyʼs immune system attacks itself. The disease affects the kidneys and usually gets worse over time. In people with IgAN, there is an increase in a type of IgA1 that gets into the blood stream. This triggers the immune system to attack IgA1 and form clusters. These clusters build up in your kidneys, leading to inflammation and damage.
IgAN is caused by increased levels of a type of IgA1 in the blood
The body produces antibodies to IgA1
Clusters of these autoimmune complexes are deposited in the kidney
The kidneys become inflamed, and irreversible damage can occur
What may cause IgAN?
One of the main underlying causes of IgAN is thought to be an IgA1 antibody, which is mostly produced in the gut.
HOW COMMON IS IgAN?
IgAN is a rare disease. It is more common among Asian and Caucasian populations.
HOW IS IgAN DIAGNOSED?
A diagnosis of IgAN is confirmed with a kidney biopsy
- A kidney biopsy is a procedure that involves taking a small piece of kidney tissue for examination
- A biopsy may reveal IgA deposits in the glomeruli
- The biopsy can also show how much kidney damage has already occurred
DID YOU KNOW?
By the time IgAN is diagnosed, some kidney damage may have already occurred.
HOW IS IgAN MONITORED?
IgAN is a progressive disease—UPCR and eGFR are 2 tests used to monitor its progress
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Use this guide to learn more about IgAN, including common tests to check your kidney health and what to look for and expect at different stages. Youʼll also find information on additional resources.