Diagnosis at Mayo Clinic

By Mayo Clinic Staff


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If focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) is suspected, your doctor will review your medical history and order lab tests to assess your kidney function. The usual tests are:

Kidney (renal) function or other testing

  • Estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). To get an indication of how well your kidneys are removing waste from the blood, you may have a blood sample taken to calculate your eGFR. The eGFR estimates the percentage of kidney function you have left.
  • Blood and urine tests. Blood tests and an analysis of a 24-hour urine collection can determine protein levels and possibly identify an underlying cause of kidney dysfunction, such as infection or diabetes.
  • Iothalamate clearance test. Sometimes your doctor may order a more sophisticated test that uses a special contrast agent to track how well your kidneys filter waste. Mayo Clinic is one of the few centers to specialize in iothalamate clearance testing using a dedicated renal studies laboratory.
  • Imaging studies. In some cases, the cause of kidney dysfunction may be found by getting images of the kidneys using studies such an ultrasound test.

Kidney biopsy

Taking a tiny sample from your kidney using a needle (biopsy) is the most accurate test to confirm the diagnosis of many kidney diseases, including FSGS. Because of the large number of people they evaluate each day, Mayo Clinic specialists are very experienced with kidney biopsies.

Read more about kidney biopsy.

March 20, 2014