Juxtaglomerular cell tumor

Last revised by Yahya Baba on 1 Sep 2023

Juxtaglomerular cell tumors, also known as reninomas, are uncommon renal tumor of the juxtaglomerular cells. The tumor cells secrete renin and often cause severe hypertension and hypokalemia.

Juxtaglomerular cell tumor affect all age groups, but are most common in adolescents and young adults, with peak prevalence in the second and third decades of life.

There is a female predominance.

Patients with a juxtaglomerular cell tumor present with headaches, dizziness, double vision, retinopathy, nausea, vomiting, and polyuria and most of these may be attributed to hypertension or hypokalemia. Reninoma may be a reason of cerebrovascular accident and death 5.

Juxtaglomerular cell tumor is often well-circumscribed, yellow to gray-tan in color, with a complete or partial fibrous capsule usually observed. Histologically cytoplasm of tumor cells consisting of renin and solid sheets of closely packed round to polygonal cells 5.

Imaging findings are variable.

  • hypoechoic mass

  • variable density with moderate enhancement during late phase after contrast administration

Reported signal characteristics include

  • T1: iso-signal intensity

  • T2: high-signal intensity 

Complete tumor resection by radical or partial nephrectomy is the best treatment for juxtaglomerular cell tumor. Anti-hypertensive agents can be used to manage hypertension until definitive therapy is planned.

Juxtaglomerular cell tumor was originally described in 1967 by Robertson et al, but first named by Kihara et al. in 1968. Approximately 100 case reports have been published.

On imaging consider other renal tumors such as

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