Rituximab use in the treatment of children with nephrotic syndrome
Keywords:children, steroid-sensitive nephrotic syndrome, rituximab
Background. High recurrence rates of nephrotic syndrome in children and consequences in the form of steroid dependence and a high risk of side effects from corticosteroids as a result involve immunosuppressive steroid-preserving agents that would increase long-term remission. Rituximab, a chimeric anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody that inhibits CD20-mediated B-cell proliferation and differentiation, has been identified as a possible alternative treatment. The purpose of the study — to estimate the efficacy and safety of treatment recurrence of nephrotic syndrome in children using rituximab like we did it on three clinical cases. Materials and methods. The experience of rituximab in children was analyzed according to the databases of Scopus, Web of Science, MedLine, The Cochrane Library, EMBASE, Global Health and our own study of the treatment of three children with steroid-sensitive nephrotic syndrome was presented. Results. Treatment of nephrotic syndrome in three children who are 5 to 7 years with rituximab was conducted. One child had a second recurrence, two children had a first recurrence. The previous episode of nephrotic syndrome in all children was treated according to the recommendations of KDIGO 2021. All patients received rituximab (two intravenous injections two weeks apart) at a dose of 15 mg/kg for 5–6 hours with prior administration of methylprednisolone at a dose of 7–10 mg/kg. One child had side effects to the first administration of rituximab in the form of hypotension 70/40 and tachycardia 116–118. Reducing the speed of administration helped to eliminate side effects. The next injection in two weeks the child endured well. The other two children had no side effects to both rituximab injections. Moreover after 1 month of rituximab administration was without side effects or hematological changes. The next administration of rituximab is scheduled in 6 months after the last administration with prior control of CD20 level. Conclusions. In general a review of studies of rituximab confirms the high efficacy of the medication in nephrotic syndrome in children and the requirement for long-term evaluation. Rituximab can be considered as a first-line treatment for recurrence of nephrotic syndrome, including in resource-limited settings. Our own experience with rituximab in recurrent nephrotic syndrome has revealed slight short-term side effects.
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