In many patients with nephrotic syndrome due to primary renal disease, initial intermittent steroid therapy is as effective as initial continuous steroid therapy and produces fewer side effects.
This finding is based on a comparative study by Donald A. Adams, MD, and Morton H. Maxwell, MD, UCLA Center for the Health Sciences, Los Angeles.
Dr. Adams told the Third International Congress of Nephrology that 17 of 35 patients (49%) with primary renal disease had a favorable response to initial intermittent therapy compared with 13 of 25 patients (52%) who responded favorably to continuous steroid administration.
Only one case of peptic ulcer occurred among patients on the initial intermittent program as compared to four cases among patients on continuous therapy. Abdominal pain occurred in five intermittent therapy patients and in ten of those given initial daily administration of steroids.
Almost all other side effects also occurred less frequently among