Acute deterioration of renal function associated with enteric hyperoxaluria.
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Enteric hyperoxaluria due to malabsorption syndromes has been well documented to cause renal calculi and chronic tubulointerstitial renal damage. Rarely, in the setting of intestinal bypass operations for morbid obesity, enteric hyperoxaluria has produced acute renal failure. We report two patients who suffered acute deterioration of renal function associated with increased intestinal absorption and renal excretion of oxalate associated with steatorrhea. One patient had a large portion of his small bowel resected many years prior to the onset of the renal failure and the second patient had chronic pancreatitis causing steatorrhea. Both patients had renal biopsy documentation of the acute nature of the tubular damage produced by oxalate deposition. The mechanisms of their deterioration of renal function may relate to sudden increases in steatorrhea in association with episodes of volume depletion. Enteric hyperoxaluria may be an easily overlooked and potentially preventable etiology of acute renal dysfunction.
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