What Is an Abnormal Condition of the Kidneys Called?

The general term used to describe damage or disease of the kidneys is nephropathy. This term, however, is not frequently used except to describe diabetic nephropathy and IgA nephropathy, explains WebMD.

Many kidney diseases and abnormalities have unique names, while others have names that represent a specific pathology within the kidney. For example, end stage renal disease occurs 10 to 20 years after the onset of chronic kidney disease, and its name describes the condition. The most common causes of ESRD in the United States are chronic hypertension and diabetes, according to Mayo Clinic.

A group of kidney diseases with similar pathology are the glomerulonephritidies. All of them have characteristic inflammation of the tubules responsible for the filtration of blood. Some of the common diseases are post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis; focal and segmental glomerulonephritis; minimal change disease; membranous glomerulonephritis; pauci-immune glomerulonephritis; and crescentic glomerulonephritis, notes Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Glomerulonephritidies such as post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis do not require treatment because they resolve spontaneously. Symptoms of this disease usually begin a few weeks after the resolution of a strep throat infection, explains MedlinePlus. Other types of glomerulonephritis often require aggressive therapy to reduce inflammation. High-dose steroids have frequently been the mainstay therapy; the drug mycophenolate mofetil has been used in cases where steroids do not help, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.