Here we show a selected set of resources for understanding kidney diseases, arranged to follow a curriculum. The level of the resources ranges from introductory to specialist level, according to the scale shown below right.킠 Although the fine details of Renal Medicine may be fairly regarded as a very specialist material, some parts of it are very general:

  • Hypertension, haematuria, proteinuria and mild to moderate CKD (CRF)
  • Acute kidney injury (AKI, or ARF)
  • Patients kept alive by dialysis and transplantation are now encountered in every specialty


Mostly simple resources that look across the whole field of renal (kidney) medicine, for students, qualified newcomers.킠 Many also suitable for educated patients.

Anatomy and physiology

Manifestations of renal disease

Content in progress …

Hypertension A key consequence of renal disease but also capable of worsening or causing renal damage.

Urinalysis One of the most basic but informative tests in nephrology is the urine dipstick and microscopy.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

Urinary tract obstruction

Glomerular diseases

Has an unfair reputation for complexity – only some diseases are complex. 킠Important as a numerically very important and treatable cause of both acute and chronic renal failure.

Tubulointerstitial diseases

The other category of ‘intrinsic renal disease’ – mostly toxic, allergic, infective. 킠Important but can be difficult to pick up.

Inherited diseases

Systemic disorders, infections and malignancy

Renovascular diseases

Content coming …

Acute Kidney Injury (AKI; Acute Renal Failure, ARF)

Increasingly recognised to be an important determinant of prognosis for all medical and surgical admissions, not just a problem for renal units.

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD; Chronic Renal Failure, CRF)

Fluid and Electrolyte abnormalities



Peritoneal dialysis


Content on the way …


Pregnancy in patients with CKD raises some important questions.킠 Complications of pregnancy can cause renal diseases, and pregnancy may influence pre-existing diseases (e.g. autoimmune diseases) that may affect the kidney.


The intricacies of renal pathology are mostly a postgraduate subject.킠 Even non-specialist pathologists tend to run away from analysing renal biopsies.


Blogs and other resources

Here we list some outstanding resources that are difficult to categorise.


The curriculum was developed with reference to textbooks and realities of practice, plus for postgraduate level resources the ISN’s Core Curriculum for postgraduate training in nephrology (no longer online), and the UK’s (unreadable) postgraduate curriculum.

Acknowledgements: Reviewers for this section were Drs Fiona Duthie, David Ferenbach, Jennifer Lees, Eleri Williams, Iain Drummond, and Neil Turner.킠 Valerie Luyckx contributed to the development of the curriculum.

  • Curriculum

  • How to …

    OpenMed rates and lists good resources for learning Medicine. Browse a curriculum to see a selection, or Search (top right) to find more.

    Level Guideexplanation of level ratings

    A/B/C = Learner, Practitioner, Expert.
  • Use our material

Developed by University of Edinburgh  |  Privacy Policy