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ASN leads the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients.

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Kidney Week

Clinical Practice Session

Getting a Handle on the Cause of Mesoamerican Nephropathy

November 07, 2019 | 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Location: Ballroom B, Walter E. Washington Convention Center

Session Description

Mesoamerican nephropathy is an epidemic of acute and chronic kidney disease in Central America, Sri Lanka, and India. Clinical, laboratory, and renal histopathology are well described; however, the causes remain unknown, with possibilities including agrichemicals, heat stress, uric acid, nephrotoxic medications, environmental toxins, and genetic predisposition. Mesoamerican nephropathy has two major considerations: 1) heat stress and uric acid-related kidney injury and 2) an environmental nephrotoxin. This session serves as a debate that allows experts to present their case for supporting one cause over the other.

Learning Objective(s)

  • Discuss the epidemic of kidney disease known as Mesoamerican nephropathy
  • Describe the potential role of environmental nephrotoxins in causing Mesoamerican nephropathy
  • Discuss the potential role of heat stress and uric acid in causing Mesoamerican nephropathy
  • Explain the pathology underlying Mesoamerican nephropathy

Learning Pathway(s)

  • Chronic Kidney Disease
  • Acute Kidney Injury


  • Magdalena Madero, MD
  • Annika Wernerson, MD


  • The Epidemic of Mesoamerican Nephropathy
    10:30 AM - 11:00 AM
    Ramon Garcia-Trabanino, MD, MS, FASN 
  • The Histopathology of Mesoamerican Nephropathy
    11:00 AM - 11:30 AM
    Julia Wijkstrom, MD, PhD
  • A Nephrotoxin is the Primary Cause of Kidney Injury
    11:30 AM - 12:00 PM
    Marc E. De Broe, MD, PhD
  • Heat Stress and Uric Acid Underlie Kidney Injury
    12:00 PM - 12:30 PM
    Richard J. Johnson, MD