Medical Definition of Renal Fanconi syndrome

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Reviewed on 12/11/2018

Renal Fanconi syndrome: Failure of the tubules in the kidney to reabsorb small molecules, causing increased urinary loss of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, bicarbonate), minerals, glucose, amino acids, and water. These losses results in polyuria (excessive urination), polydipsia (excessive intake of fluid), dehydration (from the excess urination) hypophosphatemic rickets (due to loss of phosphate in the urine), and growth retardation (due to the renal disease). Treatment is by replacing the renal losses and supplementing with citrate to alkalinize the blood. Phosphate replacement prevents and heals the rickets. Vitamin D helps the intestinal absorption of phosphate.

The syndrome is named for the Swiss pediatrician, Guido Fanconi, who also first reported Fanconi anemia.

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018