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Pediatric Nephrology


The pediatric Nephrology Department at Children’s Health℠ is the largest pediatric nephrology program in North Texas. It's also one of the biggest in the United States. Our nephrology department has also been ranked among the top pediatric hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for several years, and we provide comprehensive kidney care while working closely with your community physician.

We emphasize comprehensive care that addresses all aspects of your child's growth and well-being. A full team of experts from clinical nutrition, social work and nursing to pastoral care, child life, psychology and financial counseling are on hand to answer your questions.


Conditions We Treat

We offer a full spectrum of specialized services for children with congenital and acquired kidney-related conditions and disorders, including the following:

  • Congenital kidney abnormalities: Birth defects related to kidneys include renal agenesis (born with a single kidney), renal dysplasia (one kidney doesn't function) or ectopic kidney (a kidney in the wrong position). Most kids with congenital kidney abnormalities lead normal, healthy lives.
  • Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD): Chronic kidney disease is a condition that damages your child's kidneys or decreases their ability to filter blood properly. CKD doesn't disappear with treatment and often gets worse over time.
  • Nephrotic syndrome: An accumulation of symptoms that signal kidney damage in children. Nephrotic syndrome includes symptoms such as albuminuria, edema, hypoalbuminemia and hyperlipidemia.
  • Hematuria (blood in urine): Blood in your child's urine can be a sign of kidney problems such as an infection, inflammation, injury or something more serious.
  • Proteinuria (excess protein in urine): Proteinuria is common in children. It is often the result of something harmless but may also signal an underlying renal disease.
  • Hydronephrosis: Hydronephrosis is a swelling of the kidneys due to some other renal disease or disorder.
  • Kidney stones: A kidney stone forms from substances in the urine and can be quite painful. Although most kidney stones pass on their own, larger ones may need medical treatment.
  • Urinary Tract Infection (UTI): A UTI can happen when bacteria get into the kidneys or bladder. UTIs are more common in girls than in boys.
  • Acid-base and Electrolyte Disorders: Kidney (renal) failure can cause imbalances in important body processes. Electrolytes help regulate neurological functions, among others. Acid-base imbalances can cause problems with pH balances in blood plasma.
  • Vesicoureteral reflux: Vesicoureteral reflux is a condition in which urine can back up into the kidneys, leading to frequent UTIs. It is most often treated with antibiotics.
  • Acute glomerulonephritis: A kind of kidney disease in which the part of your child's kidneys that helps filter waste and fluids is damaged. Acute glomerulonephritis can lead to kidney failure within a few weeks or months


Tests We Perform

Nephrology testing: Several common tests can detect problems with your child's kidneys or determine how well they are working. These include:

  • Urinalysis: Can identify changes in protein and other substances in a child's urine
  • Renal ultrasound: A noninvasive test that uses sound waves to make images of your child's kidneys, ureters and bladder
  • Imaging tests: A CT scan or MRI of the abdomen that can detect certain kidney disorders in kids
  • Creatinine levels test:  Determines the level of creatinine in your child’s blood
  • Creatinine clearance test: Compares the level of creatinine in your child's urine to the level in his blood
  • BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen): When protein breaks down, urea nitrogen forms and a BUN test can measure the amount of urea nitrogen in your child's blood

Other tests for renal disorders in children include:

  • Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM): Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) measures your child's blood pressure at regular intervals. Kids with chronic kidney disease (CKD) usually have high blood pressure, which ABPM can detect.
  • Bone densitometry: Bone densitometry measures how much calcium and other types of minerals are in your child's bones. It can help detect chronic kidney disease (CKD) in kids.
  • Genetic kidney testing: Genetic tests are blood or tissue tests that determine whether a child has a genetic kidney disorders.
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR) Testing: Estimates how much blood passes through tiny filters (glomeruli) in the kidneys per minute. GFR testing can determine how well your child's kidneys are functioning.
  • Kidney biopsy:  A biopsy is a test in which a doctor takes a small piece of tissue from your child's kidney for later examination with a microscope. The procedure is usually done with a small needle.

Find Us

Patients are seen at our Dallas and Plano Campuses. If your child will be having tests (Radiology, Ultrasound, VCUG, Nuclear Medicine), report to the Radiology Department at the Imaging Center (Children's Health Specialty Center Dallas) or Main Radiology Department on the 1st floor of Children's Medical Center.

If your child will not be having tests, or if he or she already has had tests, we are located on the 5th Floor of Children's Medical Center (main hospital), suite B5238.

Please feel free to contact the Nephrology department at 214-456-2980.

Care Team

  • Stephen Pottoore, DHA, RN, BSN, MBA, CNN, CCNT, LSSGB, FACHE - Administrative Director
  • Anu Varghese, RN, BSN, CNN – Clinical Manager
  • Amy Cooke, MBA – Practice Administrator
  • Haridas Thankappan, RN, BSN, MBA, CNN - Quality and Compliance Specialist
  • Jacob Thomas, CBNT - Chief Renal Technician