Your kidneys are 2 bean-shaped organs that make urine (pee), balance your body’s water and mineral levels, and filter waste out of your blood.
The Urinary Tract
What is cortical necrosis of the kidneys?
The outer part of the kidney is called the cortex. Necrosis means death of tissue. Cortical necrosis of the kidneys is the death of tissue in the outer layer (cortex) of one or both of your kidneys.
Cortical necrosis is caused by a blockage of the blood vessels that bring blood to your kidneys.
Cortical necrosis happens when something interferes with blood flow to your kidneys
It's often caused by a severe health problem that causes a big drop in blood pressure
Cortical necrosis causes your kidneys to stop doing their job (kidney failure Overview of Kidney Failure This chapter includes a new section on COVID-19 and acute kidney injury (AKI). Kidney failure is the inability of the kidneys to adequately filter metabolic waste products from the blood. Kidney... read more )
You urinate less, have dark urine, a fever, and pain in your lower back
Doctors treat the health problem causing cortical necrosis of the kidneys and may give you fluids and antibiotics
What causes cortical necrosis of the kidneys?
The causes depend on age.
In newborns, causes include:
In children, causes include:
In adults, causes include:
Complications from pregnancy, such as uterine bleeding Excessive Uterine Bleeding at Delivery Excessive means too much. Some bleeding after you deliver a baby is normal. More than 2 cups of blood loss after vaginal delivery is excessive uterine bleeding. The most common reason for too... read more , infections after delivery Postpartum Bladder and Kidney Infections Post means "after," and partum means "pregnancy," so postpartum refers to the time period after you have a baby. It's usually considered the first 6 weeks. Your kidneys are 2 bean-shaped organs... read more , and preeclampsia Preeclampsia and Eclampsia Preeclampsia is a certain type of high blood pressure that happens during pregnancy. The placenta (afterbirth) is the organ in your uterus (womb) that feeds your unborn baby (fetus). Preeclampsia... read more
Severe blood loss from an injury or surgery
Certain drugs or chemicals
What are the symptoms of cortical necrosis of the kidneys?
You usually don't have any symptoms unless you get kidney failure. Symptoms of kidney failure include:
Feeling weak and tired
Feeling sick to your stomach
Being less hungry than usual
Feeling sleepy or confused
How can doctors tell if I have cortical necrosis of the kidneys?
Doctors suspect cortical necrosis if you have one of the disorders that can cause it and routine blood tests show your kidneys aren't working normally. To tell for sure, they may do:
Computed tomography angiography (CTA)—a type of CT scan that focuses on your major blood vessels
How do doctors treat cortical necrosis of the kidneys?
Doctors treat the problem that caused the cortical necrosis.
If you have kidney failure, you may need:
Dialysis Dialysis Dialysis is an artificial process for removing waste products and excess fluids from the body, a process that is needed when the kidneys are not functioning properly. There are a number of reasons... read more (a machine filters your blood when your kidneys aren't able to)