The purpose of this study was to investigate the clinical, laboratory, and pathologic characteristics of dense deposit disease (DDD) in Korean children and to determine whether these characteristics differ between Korean and American children with DDD. In 2010, we sent a structured protocol about DDD to pediatric nephrologists throughout Korea. The data collected were compared with previously published data on 14 American children with DDD. Korean children had lower 24-hr urine protein excretion and higher serum albumin levels than American children. The light microscopic findings revealed that a higher percentage of Korean children had membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis patterns (Korean, 77.8%; American, 28.6%, P = 0.036), whereas a higher percentage of American children had crescents (Korean, 0%; American, 78.6%, P < 0.001). The findings from the electron microscopy revealed that Korean children were more likely to have segmental electron dense deposits in the lamina densa of the glomerular basement membrane (Korean, 100%; American, 28.6%, P = 0.002); mesangial deposit was more frequent in American children (Korean, 66.7%; American, 100%, P = 0.047). The histological findings revealed that Korean children with DDD were more likely to show membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis patterns than American children. The degree of proteinuria and hypoalbuminemia was milder in Korean children than American children.
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