Transient proteinuria in the absence of underlying renal disease was detected in 11 of 198 children (5·6%) admitted to hospital with an acute febrile illness. Proteinuria was noted only in children whose fever was higher than 38·4 °C. Selectivity studies on the protein excreted showed patterns ranging from poorly to highly selective. Initial screening for proteinuria using a dipstick method revealed a high incidence of false positives, of which only about 30% could be confirmed by the sulphosalicylic acid method.
The pathophysiology of transient proteinuria in febrile patients is not understood; a number of mechanisms are probably involved. Since fever was the only detected feature common to each of the patients with proteinuria, it seems unlikely that the specific aetiology of the fever is a factor of importance in the pathogenesis of the proteinuria.
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