Mesangioproliferative glomerulonephritis with extracapillary crescents - unexpected fatal complication in a 17-year-old patient with implanted left ventricular assist device

Vol. 61 No. 2, 2020


Elena Carmen Opris, Horatiu Suciu, Ioan Jung, Catalin Bogdan Satala, Hussam Al Hussein, Marius Mihai Harpa, Cosmin Marian Banceu, Simona Gurzu

The continuous flow left ventricular assist device (cf-LVAD) is the life-saving solution for patients with end-stage global heart failure. We present the case of a young patient with biventricular dilated cardiomyopathy, who had a cf-LVAD implantation and died as result of progressive renal failure. In the first year after implantation, he suffered repeated strokes and episodes of pneumonia with Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli. The patient had hypertension, which was kept under control with angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and beta-blockers. After multiple bleeding episodes, the patient died at 21 months after the LVAD implant. At autopsy, parenchymatous brain hemorrhage was found to be associated with pulmonary hemorrhages. The unexpected features related to mesangioproliferative and extracapillary glomerulonephritis, with focal glomerulosclerosis. The proliferated parietal cells of Bowman s capsule proved to express cluster of differentiation 44 (CD44), whereas remnant podocytes and mesangial cells showed Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) positivity. Since CD44 might be involved in fibrogenesis, but ACE inhibitors can exert a protective role against glomerular deterioration, we performed a synthesis of literature data which enabled us to propose a hypothesis with a potential clinical impact. We conclude that, in patients with LVAD implants, high blood pressure and high serum level of angiotensin II, the association between ACE inhibitors and anti-CD44 agents might exert glomerular protection and increase the survival time. Experimental studies are necessary to support our hypothesis and to explain the mechanism of possible glomerulopathy installed after LVAD implant.

Corresponding author: Simona Gurzu, Professor, MD, PhD; e-mail:

DOI: 10.47162/RJME.61.2.24 Download PDF
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