Michael L. Moritz, MD

  • Professor of Pediatrics
  • Clinical Director, Pediatric Nephrology, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Medical Director, Pediatric Dialysis, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Medical Director, Pediatric Kidney Transplant Program, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

Administrative Assistant: Nancy Hessom

Michael L. Moritz, MD, completed his medical school and residency at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. He completed his fellowship in pediatric nephrology at Texas Children's Hospital and from there he moved on to the Albert Einstein College of Medicine where he was medical director of the pediatric dialysis unit at Montefiore Children’s Hospital. He joined UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh faculty in 1999 where he is currently Professor of Pediatrics, Clinical Director of the Division of Nephrology, Medical Director of Pediatric Dialysis and of Pediatric Kidney Transplant Program.

Dr. Moritz has been recognized for his outstanding clinical work, teaching and research. He has won the faculty-teaching award at both The University of Chicago and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and also was a recipient of the ACES award for the outstanding clinical faculty at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, Chair Distinction Awardee for outstanding service, Publons’ Peer Review Award, and selected as one of Pittsburgh Magazine’s Best Doctors and Castle Connolly Top Doctors.  Dr. Moritz has also been elected to the Society for Pediatric Research. 

Dr. Moritz's primary research interests are in sodium and water metabolism in children. Dr. Moritz in an expert on the epidemiology, evaluation and treatment of dysnatremias in children and Adults.  He has published and lectured extensively on this topic including publications in the New England Journal of Medicine and invited lectures at the Pediatric Academic Society (PAS) and American Society of Nephrology annual meetings.  He has done seminal work in this field, pointing out the dangers of using hypotonic fluids in hospitalized children as it has resulted in numerous cases of iatrogenic death or permanent neurological injury. Dr. Moritz was the first to recommend the use of 0.9% sodium chloride in maintenance fluids in hospitalized children as prophylaxis against developing hospital acquired hyponatremia. Dr. Moritz also introduced the concept of using repeated 3% sodium chloride boluses for the treatment of hyponatremic encephalopathy which is now become the accepted therapy. Dr. Moritz is also an expert in salt poisoning in children and has been involved in multiple alleged salt poisoning criminal cases. Dr. Moritz is involved in the institution primary investigator on numerous clinical trials. Dr. Moritz serves on the editorial board of numerous journals.  He is Specialty Chief Editor of Pediatric Nephrology for Frontiers in Pediatrics. 

Professional and Scientific Society Memberships

  • National Kidney Foundation, 2018-Present
  • Society for Pediatric Research, 2006-Present
  • American Society of Pediatric Nephrology, 1995-Present
  • International Pediatric Nephrology Association, 1995-Present
  • Council of Pediatric Nephrology, 1997-1999
  • American Society of Nephrology, 1998-Present
  • National Kidney Foundation, 1998-Present
  • New York Society of Nephrology, 1999-2000

Education & Training

  • BA, Chemistry, University of Miami, 1987
  • MD, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, 1991
  • Residency in Pediatrics, University of Chicago-Wyler Children's Hospital, 1991-1994
  • Fellowship in Pediatric Nephrology, Baylor College of Medicine-Texas Children's Hospital, 1997

Selected Publications

Vats AN, Ishwad C, Vats KR, Moritz M, Ellis D, Mueller C, Surti U, Parizhskaya MZ, Meza MP, Burke L, Schneck FX, Saxena M, Ferrell R.  Steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome and congenital anomalies of kidneys: evidence of locus on chromosome 13q.  Kidney Int. 2003 Jul;64(1):17-24.

Moritz ML, Ayus JC.  Prevention of hospital-acquired hyponatremia: A case for using isotonic saline.  Pediatrics 2003 111(2):227-30

Vats A, Shapiro R, Singh Randhawa P, Scantlebury V, Tuzuner A, Saxena M, Moritz ML, Beattie TJ, Gonwa T, Green MD, Ellis D. Quantitative viral load monitoring and cidofovir therapy for the management of BK virus-associated nephropathy in children and adults. Transplantation 2003 Jan 15;75(1):105-12

Moritz ML, Vats A, Ellis D.  Systemic anticoagulation and bleeding in children with hemodialysis catheters. Pediatr Nephrol 2003;18(1):68-70

Moritz ML, Ayus JC.  Disorders of sodium metabolism in children: hyponatremia and hypernatremia.  Pediatrics in Review 2002; 23(11):371-380.

Nolt D, Saad R, Kouatli A, Moritz ML, Menon RK, Michaels MG. Survival with hypopituitarism from congenital syphilis. Pediatrics 2002 109(4):e63

Moritz ML, del Rio M, Crooke GA, Singer LP.  Acute Peritoneal dialysis as both cause and treatment of hypernatremia in an infant. Pediatric Nephrology 2001; 16:697-700.

Greenstein SM, del Rio M, Ong E, Feuerstein E, Schechner R, Kim D, Corey C, Kaskel R, Tellis VA, Moritz ML. Plasmapheresis treatment for recurrent focal sclerosis in pediatric renal allografts. Pediatric Nephrology 2000; 14:1061-1065

Geller DS, Farhi A, Pinkerton N, Fradley M, Moritz M, Spitzer A, Meinke G, Tsai FT, Sigler PB, Lifton RP. Activating mineralocorticoid receptor mutation in hypertension exacerbated by pregnancy. Science. 2000: 289(5476):119-123

Moritz ML, Ayus JC.  The changing pattern of hypernatremia in hospitalized children. Pediatrics. 1999;104(3):435-439

Full Publication List via NIH PubMed »

Academic and Research Interests

  • Fluid therapy
  • Cerebral demyelination 
  • Disorders in sodium and water metabolism
  • Dialysis

Research Grants

A Phase 2, Open-Label, Multiple Dose Study to Evaluate the Pharmacodynamic Efforts, Safety, and Tolerability of Patiromer for Oral Suspension in Children and Adolescents 2 to < 18 Years of Age with Chronic Kidney Disease and Hyperkalema (Emerald) (Institutional PI), 2017-Present