Endemic nephropathy is a chronic renal disease with a high prevalence in a geographically limited area of Croatia. It has also been recorded in some parts of Bosnia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania. Despite numerous studies conducted to date, the etiology of this disease has not been clarified. Pathological studies of the kidney in the early stage of endemic nephropathy have shown renal tubules to be the primary sites of the pathologic process with an interstitial tissue reaction, whereas glomerular alterations are of a secondary character. Tubulointerstitial lesions can thus account for the symptoms of the disease, i.e. tubular proteinuria and reduced urine concentration capacity and urine acidification. Also, an increased incidence of malignant tumours of the urinary tract was found in the same geographic area.
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