It is probable that, at the present day,
the function of no organ in the body is being investigated
by so many methods . in the course of hospital
treatment, as that of the kidney.
The large number of methods used is the
result of the fact that there is no general consensus
of opinion as to any one method being definitely
better than the others.
A great deal of work has been done, comparing
the relative values of these tests, the one
with the other, in different types of nephritis, and
in different stages of the disease.
Much investigation has also been carried
out to demonstrate how the results of these biochem-
ical tests compare with the clinical findings, such
as the presence, and severity of ha m at ura, albumin -
uria, anaemia and elevation of blood pressure.
One feels that in the multiplication of
the kidney function tests, we are getting further and
further away from the patient, and our attention is
being diverted too much from the ward towards the
In the following pages, it is our inten-
tion to pick out the salient points from the vast
amount of recent investigation into kidney function,
and in the light of these findings, to discuss the
various kidney function tests in daily use, and their
Thereafter we intend to present the records
of an investigation carried out by ourselves.
The object of the investigation has been
to correlate more closely the results of the kidney
function tests to other clinical findings recorded
simultaneously. The clinical tests used deal
chiefly with changes in the condition of the cardio-
vascular system, as indicated by the systolic and
diastolic blood pressure, the pulse pressure, and the
The justification for such an investigation will be discussed later.
It is hoped that by this co- relating the
clinical findings to the kidney function, one might
be able, by the clinical findings alone, to assess
the kidney function. In this way much time- consuming
and expensive laboratory investigation might be
eliminated, without loss of efficiency, or insight
into the true condition of the patient, and the course
of his disease.