Nephrology concerns the diagnosis and treatment of kidney diseases, including electrolyte disturbances and hypertension, and the care of those requiring renal replacement therapy, including dialysis and renal transplant patient. Many diseases affecting the kidney are systemic disorders not limited to the organ itself, and may require special treatment. Examples include acquired conditions such as systemic vasculitides (e.g. ANCA vasculitis) and autoimmune diseases (e.g. lupus), as well as congenital or genetic conditions such as polycystic kidney disease.
Patients are commonly referred to nephrology specialists for various reasons, including : acute renal failure, chronic kidney disease, hematuria, proteinuria, kidney stones, hypertension, and disorders of acid/base or electrolytes.