MU Health Care is home to the only pediatric nephrologists in mid-Missouri. We expertly address problems affecting your child’s kidneys, working with you to diagnose and care for them.

Pediatric nephrology

Whether your child has high blood pressure, kidney stones, chronic kidney disease or any other kidney problem, our pediatric nephrologists can help. Our goal is to work with you and your child to address what matters most to you.

Here are some of the kidney conditions we treat:

  • Chronic kidney disease (CKD)
  • Congenital (present at birth) kidney disease
  • Glomerular disorders, like lupus, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), and minimal change disease
  • Hematuria (blood in the urine)
  • Hemolytic uremic syndrome
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Kidney cysts, including polycystic kidney disease
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Kidney failure (renal failure)
  • Kidney stones
  • Nephritis (inflammation of the kidneys)
  • Nephrotic syndrome
  • Proteinuria (excessive protein in the urine)
  • Urinary tract infections (UTI)

Pediatric nephrology services we offer

We provide the full spectrum of kidney care for kids. From diagnosis to the latest medications and procedures, we’ll help you get your child back to the healthiest version of themselves.

The treatments and services we offer include:

  • Blood pressure monitoring and treatment
  • Dialysis
  • Kidney transplant
  • Kidney biopsy
  • Prenatal consultation for kidney abnormalities
  • Immunosuppressive drugs for kidney diseases

How are kidney problems treated?

Starting with evaluation and diagnosis in a kid-friendly space, our pediatric nephrologists take every step to make your child feel comfortable. We’ll work with you to develop a treatment plan specific to your child including the most advanced care to meet your goals.


Medications are necessary for many kidney conditions. Your child may need medication to control their blood pressure, protein in the urine, acidosis (acid buildup), autoimmune disease or other conditions impacting your child’s kidney health.

Lifestyle changes

While kidney disease can affect your child’s blood pressure, there are ways to help control it. Our team will educate you about nutrition and activities that can help manage your child’s blood pressure and overall health.

Physical therapy

If your child’s kidney problems cause recurrent UTIs or bladder issues, physical therapy can help. Our physical therapists offer various biofeedback therapies. These therapies teach your child how to incorporate different techniques, like breathing exercises or muscle activity, to relieve symptoms.


Dialysis can take over the kidney’s job of removing waste from the blood. Whenever possible, we provide options for your child to do dialysis at home. This helps to keep your child on a regular schedule with school, activities and sports.

Kidney transplant

Our pediatric nephrologists focus on comprehensive kidney transplant care, from preparation to transplant surgery, and lifelong care after transplant. We believe in the power of kidney transplantation to help patients live longer and healthier lives.

Our collaborative approach to kidney care

When your child’s kidneys aren’t working properly, it can also cause other health problems. We work closely with other specialists to ensure we’re addressing all of your child’s health needs. 

Other specialists who may be involved in your child’s care include:

  • Cardiologists who can help keep your child’s heart healthy.
  • Endocrinologists who can help manage your child’s blood sugar levels and keep their growth on track.
  • Urologists who can perform procedures necessary to correct malformations of the kidneys and urinary tract.
  • Dietitians who can help ensure appropriate nutrition to meet your goals.
  • Psychologists who can help you and your health care team identify strategies to help your child understand handle the impact of chronic disease.

When should my child see a pediatric nephrologist?

If your child’s kidney condition is affecting their quality of life, a pediatric nephrologist may be able to lessen their symptoms.

Symptoms of kidney conditions

Signs of kidney problems include:

  • Fever
  • Edema (swelling around the eyes, face, feet, and ankles)
  • Fatigue
  • Prolonged nausea or vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Blood in the urine
  • High blood pressure

You should talk to your pediatrician if your child has one or more of these symptoms. They may order some tests or refer you to our pediatric nephrology team to help get to the root cause.

How do I choose between a nephrologist and a urologist?

Problems in your child’s kidney, bladder and urinary tract are often related. That can make choosing a specialist for treatment confusing.

In short, if your child has a problem with kidney function or blood pressure, pediatric nephrologists can help. We can treat the underlying problems in your child’s kidneys that often cause issues in the bladder or urinary tract. If your child has structural problems of the kidneys, bladder, or urinary tract, they may need to see a urologist.

Depending on your child's needs, they may also need to see a urologist. We often partner with pediatric urologists to develop personalized plans and treatment recommendations based on joint reviews of test results and other information.

What to expect

Our goal is to see your child as quickly as possible. On average, we can get your child in for a first appointment within a week. And if your child’s condition is severe, we often get them in sooner.

During this first visit, your pediatric nephrologist will discuss your child’s symptoms. They’ll also perform a physical exam and review your child’s health history, including past tests and treatments. If needed, they’ll order additional tests.

We’ll then discuss our recommendations and treatment options with you and your child.

Follow-up care

Once your child starts on a plan for diagnosis and treatment, they’ll typically have follow-up tests and visits at intervals ranging from a few weeks to a few months depending on the condition. During these visits, we will talk about how your child is responding to treatments and how they’re feeling. If needed, we can work with you to make any adjustments to your child’s treatment plan.

Pediatric nephrology telehealth services

If you’re unable to travel to our hospital, you may be able to schedule a video visit. Through telehealth, our nephrologists can discuss your child’s test results and provide ongoing monitoring of symptoms.