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<< Acute Kidney Injury in Pediatric Patients: Diagnosis and Management in the Emergency Department (Pharmacology CME)

Etiology and Pathophysiology

AKI can be subdivided into prerenal, intrinsic, and postrenal causes; however, in some cases, these divisions may overlap. (See Table 2.) For example, prerenal dysfunction may predispose and exacerbate the intrinsic injury caused by nephrotoxic medications or, if prolonged, cause acute tubular necrosis. Previously, the most common etiologies of pAKI were thought to be intrinsic, such as glomerulonephritis and hemolytic uremic syndrome. While these etiologies continue to contribute to the overall incidence of AKI, the most common etiologies in pediatric patients are now known to be due to hypovolemia, sepsis, shock, and cardiac dysfunction.7

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