Division of Paediatric Nephrology, Children's Hospital, University of Helsinki, Finland.
Congenital nephrotic syndrome of the Finnish type (CNF) is a rare autosomal recessively inherited disease characterised by intrauterine onset of massive urinary loss of proteins, 90% of which is albumin. The CNF gene has been localised to the long arm of chromosome 19, but the pathogenesis remains unclear. Historically, all CNF patients died, usually within the first 6 months of life. Today, a normal life can be achieved for a child with CNF by correcting the protein deficiency and normalising nutrition. This is accomplished by early intravenous albumin supplementation, nutritional support, aggressive treatment of complications and early renal transplantation, after bilateral nephrectomy and peritoneal dialysis. In the present article current treatment strategies are reviewed, and our own experience with 43 CNF patients during the last 10 years is presented.