Evidence of nephrolithiasis or hydronephrosis remained at the six-month mark in 12% of children in China who consumed toxic, melamine-contaminated products, according to a recent analysis.

Chinese authorities reported a large outbreak of serious kidney damage in Chinese children on September 12, 2008, after the industrial chemical compound had been used to boost the protein content of milk.

That month, ultrasound screening indicated that 48 children under age 3 who were exposed to mean 116 mg/day of melamine between June and August 2008 were affected by kidney stones and swelling; 43 of them were asymptomatic.

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Six months later, five of the 46 children with available follow-up data continued to exhibit renal abnormalities. The findings from Jian-meng Liu, PhD, and colleagues appeared online ahead of print in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.