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Renal replacement lipomatosis

Renal replacement lipomatosis is a rare condition characterized by fatty tissue proliferation in the renal sinus and perinephric space with marked destruction/atrophy of renal parenchyma (due to chronic inflammation).

Patients usually present with non-specific complaints like flank pain, fever and weight loss. Sometimes a patient may directly complain of a vague flank mass.

It has been associated with aging, calculus disease (nearly 70% of cases), renal tuberculosis and post-transplantation. It may also be associated with fibrotic changes to a varying degree.

An advanced stage of xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis is another common association.

It is considered to be on the extreme end of a spectrum with renal sinus lipomatosis being the mildest form. The condition is usually unilateral but it can occur bilaterally.

Usually shows calculi and displacement of the bowel.

It is usually difficult to come to a diagnosis on ultrasound alone but it may show an echogenic mass suggestive of fatty tissue and calculi in the atrophic renal tissue.

It is diagnostic and shows typical features including:

  • renal parenchymal atrophy/destruction
  • perinephric and hilar lipomatosis
  • renal calculi
  • perinephric abscesses which may extend to the psoas muscle

Possible differential considerations include:

Article information

rID: 45372
System: Urogenital
Tag: cases, renal
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Replacement lipomatosis of the kidney
  • Renal fibrolipomatosis

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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  • Case 2
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  • Case 3: with staghorn calculus
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