Clinical Nephrology

Clinical nephrology is the study of kidney diseases. We diagnose patients with a variety of kidney related diseases, and also manage them. Many of the diseases we deal with are secondary to hypertension or diabetes. We strive to prevent the progression of chronic kidney disease. An excellent resource about chronic kidney disease can be reviewed at MedlinePlus.


Dialysis is a therapy that some patients require when their kidneys fail. It can be performed for acute kidney injury or for advanced chronic kidney disease. There are two main types of dialysis used in chronic kidney disease, peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis. The National Kidney Foundation has excellent resources related to dialysis.


When kidneys no longer function, patient have either the choice of dialysis or a kidney transplantation. If you are eligible for a kidney transplant, your doctor will refer you to a kidney transplant center for further evaluation. Patients may either recieve a transplant from a living donor or a deceased donor. Living donors may be a relative or a close friend. The potential donor must match, and also be healthy. In some situations, a kidney paired donation may be necessary. When a suitable living donor is not available, you may be placed on a transplant list to receive a deceased donor kidney. More information about kidney transplantation can be found from < jref=””> The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS).

Hospital Consultation

Kidney Associates physicians work as consultants, and care for patients in one of the local Houston hospitals with a variety of kidney disorders. Acute Kidney Injury is a condition that arises when the kidney function decreases over a few hours or days. It can occur in patients who are in the intensive care unit, and may occur after surgery, or in those who are elderly or very ill. Acute kidney injury is discussed in more detail on the National Kidney Foundation Website.

Vascular Access

When your physician or nephrologist determines that dialysis is necessary, you will have the choice of either peritoneal dialysis (performed through the abdomen) or hemodialysis. Hemodialysis is best performed through an arteriovenous (av) access, that may be either an av fistula or an av graft.   This is created by a surgical procedure, and depending upon the type of surgery, may take several weeks to mature, and become ready for use. An excellent resource to understand more about the arteriovenous fistula has been developed by the ESRD Network Coordinating Center.

Sometimes the av access becomes narrowed during use. Specialists at the Houston Vascular Access Center are trained to open the access through a procedure known as baloon angioplasty.

Clinical Research

The advancement of science depends on clinical trials. This advancement is our hope that new and better therapy will be available for you as well as other people who may develop kidney disease. Once clinical trials of medications have been performed, and the study drugs are determined to be safe and effective, the pharmaceutical companies may seek approval of the US Food and Drug Administration. (FDA). Often, drugs already proven to be safe and approved by the FDA, may be tested for different medical indications.

Kidney Associates has a research department and participates in several clinical trials. To learn about our research projects, contact our office and ask for our research department.

Web Resources
Frequently Asked Questions