Thirteen patients with medullary sponge kidney underwent a short ammonium chloride loading test to investigate their renal acidification capacity. All but 1 presented with a history of recurrent renal calculi and showed bilateral widespread renal medullary calcification on X-ray examination. Nine patients had some form of renal acidification defect; 8 had the distal type of renal tubular acidosis, 2 the complete and 6 the incomplete form. One patient had proximal renal tubular acidosis. These findings, which suggest that renal acidification defects play an important role in the pathogenesis of renal calculi in medullary sponge kidney, have considerable therapeutic implications.
B J U International (print), 1988, Vol 61, Issue 5, p. 392-4