When you have nephrotic syndrome, an important protein called albumin leaks into your urine instead of getting filtered by the kidneys as it should. Albumin helps your body get rid of extra fluid. When you do not have enough albumin in your blood, fluid can build up in your body, causing swelling in your legs, feet and ankles. You can also have other problems such as blood clots and infections.

With nephrotic syndrome, cholesterol also builds up in your blood. When you have too much cholesterol in your blood, clumps form inside your veins and arteries, which can cause a heart attack or a stroke.

Nephrotic syndrome can also cause other serious health problems such as: