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Bartter syndrome

  • Definition

    Bartter syndrome refers to a group of rare conditions that affect the kidneys.

    See also: Aldosterone test


    Alternative Names

    Potassium wasting; Salt-wasting nephropathy


    Causes, incidence, and risk factors

    There are five gene defects known to be associated with Bartter syndrome. The condition is present from before birth (congenital).

    The condition is thought to be caused by a defect in the kidney's ability to reabsorb sodium. Persons with Bartter syndrome lose too much sodium through the urine. This causes a rise in the level of the hormone aldosterone and makes the kidneys remove too much potassium from the body. This is known as potassium wasting. The condition also results in an abnormal acid balance in the blood called hypokalemic alkalosis.