Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) is a disorder that usually occurs when an E. coli bacterial infection in the digestive system produces toxic substances that destroy red blood cells. Symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea, fever, lethargy, and weakness. In severe cases it can lead to kidney failure or death. While this condition is most common in children, it often has a more complicated presentation in adults. Treatment may include dialysis, corticosteroids, transfusions of packed red blood cells and plasmapheresis.
Hemolytic uremic syndrome should be distinguished from atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS). The two conditions have different causes and different signs and symptoms.
The Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) provides the following list of features that have been reported in people with this condition. Much of the information in the HPO comes from Orphanet, a European rare disease database. If available, the list includes a rough estimate of how common a feature is (its frequency). Frequencies are based on a specific study and may not be representative of all studies. You can use the MedlinePlus Medical Dictionary for definitions of the terms below.
|Signs and Symptoms||Approximate number of patients (when available)|
|Acute kidney injury||-|
|Autosomal dominant inheritance||-|
|Autosomal recessive inheritance||-|
|Decreased serum complement C3||-|
|Decreased serum complement factor B||-|
|Decreased serum complement factor H||-|
|Decreased serum complement factor I||-|
|Elevated serum creatinine||-|
|Increased blood urea nitrogen||-|
|Microangiopathic hemolytic anemia||-|
The resources below provide information about treatment options for this condition. If you have questions about which treatment is right for you, talk to your healthcare professional.
With proper management, most children who develop hemolytic uremic syndrome and its complications recover without permanent damage to their health.
However, children with hemolytic uremic syndrome may have serious and sometimes life-threatening complications, including:
Some children may sustain significant kidney damage that slowly develops into chronic kidney disease (CKD). Children who develop CKD must receive treatment to replace the work the kidneys do, either through dialysis or kidney transplantation.
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Nonprofit support and advocacy groups bring together patients, families, medical professionals, and researchers. These groups often raise awareness, provide support, and develop patient-centered information. Many are the driving force behind research for better treatments and possible cures. They can direct people to research, resources, and services. Many groups also have experts who serve as medical advisors. Visit their website or contact them to learn about the services they offer. Inclusion on this list is not an endorsement by GARD.
Living with a genetic or rare disease can impact the daily lives of patients and families. These resources can help families navigate various aspects of living with a rare disease.
These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.
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I was diagnosed with hemolytic uremic syndrome as an infant. I developed kidney and heart failure and received several blood transfusions. At the age of 15 I was put on blood pressure medication. Is kidney disease/dialysis part of the long-term outlook for people who were affected by this condition as a child? See answer