Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation

: 2021  |  Volume : 32  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 595--596

Time to appreciate Avicenna’s diagnosis of chronic kidney diseases based on examination of the urine

Nader Aghakhani 
 Clinical Research Institute, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Nader Aghakhani
Clinical Research Institute, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia

How to cite this article:
Aghakhani N. Time to appreciate Avicenna’s diagnosis of chronic kidney diseases based on examination of the urine.Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl 2021;32:595-596

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Aghakhani N. Time to appreciate Avicenna’s diagnosis of chronic kidney diseases based on examination of the urine. Saudi J Kidney Dis Transpl [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 May 24 ];32:595-596
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Full Text

To the Editor,

The outstanding scientist of the Islamic Golden Age, Avicenna (980–1037 AD), presented an organized and clear summary of all the medical information of the times in Canon of Medicine, his important book that was translated into many languages as the main medical references for decades in Europe, Africa, and Asia.[1]

As an abnormality of kidney function or structure and significant public health problem, chronic kidney disease (CKD) has many significant adverse consequences and laboratory medicine to diagnose and manage of it has a great importance: the diagnosis is based on assessment of proteinuria and estimation of glomerular filtration rate to find complications, better treatment decision-making and screening, and determining physiologic parameters.[2]

One of the main approaches used by Avicenna in the diagnosis of CKD was based on examination of the urine. His idea on the methods of examinations of the characteristics of urine and collecting of it in healthy and sick persons are similar to the methods described in the modern textbooks of urology. Moreover, he described thirst, oliguria, edema of leg, polyuria, dysuria, retention, enuresis, and hematuria as main signs of kidney diseases.[3],[4]

He was one of the first scientist to point out this fact that hematuria may be due to outside causes such as blood diseases, for example and described urinary tract abscess formation and infections and in the renal system in detail, as well as obstruction, kidney stones, polycystic kidneys, small-sized kidneys, and proteinuria (“Foaming Urine”). He used soft malleable leather and silver catheters for the first time in Iran and reminded that the catheters should have holes, so that if the patient becomes plugged, urine can be drained out through other holes, avoiding reinserting or withdrawing the catheter.[5],[6]

The treatment of infectious diseases determines its history back to the research of many scientists of the Islamic Golden Age. Our great medieval scientists like Avicenna had explained about many diseases based on their clinical and pathological signs and symptoms, prognosis, and treatment.[7]

Therefore, all of us should be grateful to him. Understanding his knowledge and efforts in his time can help us to have a comprehended scope about his significant role in developing of medicine during his own time.

Conflict of interest: None declared.


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7Aghakhani N, Azami M, Ghomashlooyan M, Nikoonejad A. Time to appreciate Avicenna’s knowledge of rabies. Caspian J Intern Med 2017;8:63-4.