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An intrathoracic kidney is a very rare form of ectopic kidney. There has been no reported increased incidence of stones or infections as can be seen with other forms of ectopic kidneys. The adrenal glands are usually normal in location in most cases.
Thoracic ectopic kidney is rare with male predominance and incidence of 1/10,000 ectopic kidneys. Left-sided intrathoracic kidney is more common 3.
Intrathoracic kidneys are usually asymptomatic, however in symptomatic patients presenting symptoms include pneumonia, dyspnea, and cough 3.
Appears as a well-defined lower thoracic opacity.
The diagnosis can be easily confirmed by ultrasound. In most cases, the thoracic kidney rests on the diaphragm, so an acoustic window of the liver or spleen can be used to demonstrate it.
Detects the associated herniated other abdominal organs, renal pedicle, and ureteric course. The renal vessels always have normal anatomical origin.
- 1. Mensah YB, Forson C. Left thoracic kidney: a rare finding at intravenous urography. Ghana Med J. 2011;44 (1): 39-40. Free text at pubmed - Pubmed citation
- 2. Lee A Grant, Nyree Griffin. Grainger & Allison's Diagnostic Radiology Essentials. (2018) ISBN: 9780323568845
- 3. Pe aFD, Pe HnMnS, Pe ILA, Pe UYL, Pe. [Intrathoracic Ectopic Kidney]. (2020) Anales de pediatria (Barcelona, Spain : 2003). doi:10.1016/j.anpedi.2019.01.005 - Pubmed