There is currently no specific treatment for dense deposit disease (DDD), but therapies are available to help slow the progression of the condition through aggressive blood pressure control and reduction of proteinuria. Both angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin II type-1 receptor blockers (ARBs) can be used to decrease the amount of protein in the urine and improve kidney function. These drugs may also limit the infiltration of white blood cells into the kidney. If hyperlipidemia (increased lipid in the blood stream) is present, lipid-lowering drugs may be used to reduce long-term risks of atherosclerosis. These drugs may also delay progression of kidney disease. Steroid therapy was widely used in the past, but more recent studies have shown that it is probably not effective for DDD. Steroid therapy is effective in a form of glomerulonephritis called juvenile acute non-proliferative glomerulonephritis (JANG), which is sometimes confused with DDD.
People with DDD who develop end-stage renal disease typically need peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis. Kidney transplant may be an option for some individuals; however, DDD will still develop in virtually all transplanted kidneys and about half of transplants will ultimately fail. There is some evidence that the likelihood of transplant failure due to recurrent DDD decreases with time.
Last updated: 12/15/2014
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