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Renal Oncocytoma

Condition 101

What is the definition of Renal Oncocytoma?

Renal oncocytoma is a benign (noncancerous) growth of the kidney. They generally do not cause any signs or symptoms and are often discovered incidentally (by chance) while a person is undergoing diagnostic imaging for other conditions. Some people with renal oncocytoma will have abdominal or flank pain; blood in the urine; and/or an abdominal mass. Although these tumors can occur in people of all ages, they most commonly develop in men who are over age 50. The exact underlying cause of most isolated (single tumor affecting one kidney) renal oncocytomas is unknown; however, multiple and bilateral (affecting both kidneys) renal oncocytomas sometimes occur in people with certain genetic syndromes such as tuberous sclerosis complex and Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome. Although many benign tumors do not require treatment unless they are causing unpleasant symptoms, it can be difficult to confidently differentiate a renal oncocytoma from renal cell carcinoma. Most affected people are, therefore, treated with surgery which allows for confirmation of the diagnosis.abdominal or flank p ...

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What are the alternative names for Renal Oncocytoma?

  • Oncocytoma renal
  • Oncocytoma kidney

What are the causes for Renal Oncocytoma?

The exact underlying cause of most renal oncocytomas is unknown. However, researchers suspect that acquired (not present at birth) changes in mitochondrial DNA may play a role in the development of some of these tumors.

Renal oncocytomas sometimes occur in people with certain genetic syndromes such as tuberous sclerosis complex and Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome. In these cases, affected people often have multiple and bilateral (affecting both kidneys) oncocytomas and may also have family members with these tumors. When renal oncocytomas are part of a genetic syndrome, they are caused by changes (mutations) in a specific gene. Tuberous sclerosis complex is caused by mutations in the TSC1 gene or TSC2 gene, while Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome is caused by mutations in the FLCN gene.

What are the symptoms for Renal Oncocytoma?

Most people with a renal oncocytoma do not have any signs or symptoms. In fact, these tumors are often discovered incidentally (by chance) while a person is undergoing diagnostic imaging for other conditions. In about a third of cases, people with renal oncocytoma will present with abdominal or flank pain; blood in the urine; and/or an abdominal mass.

Affected people usually have a single, unilateral (only affecting one kidney) renal oncocytoma. However, multiple, bilateral (affecting both kidneys) tumors have rarely been reported in people with tuberous sclerosis complex and Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome.

What are the current treatments for Renal Oncocytoma?

Most renal oncocytomas are benign (non-cancerous) and metastasis is very rare. Although many benign tumors do not require treatment unless they are causing unpleasant symptoms, it can be difficult to confidently differentiate a renal oncocytoma from renal cell carcinoma based on diagnostic imaging tests alone. Most people are, therefore, treated with surgery which allows for confirmation of the diagnosis. If a renal oncocytoma is strongly suspected prior to surgery, a more conservative procedure such as a partial nephrectomy, may be performed.

What is the outlook (prognosis) for Renal Oncocytoma?

The long-term outlook (prognosis) for people with a sporadic (not part of a genetic syndrome) renal oncocytoma is generally good. These tumors are most often benign and metastasis is very rare. After renal oncocytomas are surgically removed, they typically don't recur. The lifespan of affected people is usually not impacted by the tumor.

When a renal oncocytoma is part of a genetic syndrome such as tuberous sclerosis complex and Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome, the prognosis varies based on the other associated signs and symptoms.

How is Renal Oncocytoma diagnosed?

A diagnosis of renal oncocytoma is often suspected based on imaging studies such as computed tomography (CT scan) and/or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI scan). However, it can be difficult to differentiate a renal oncocytoma from renal cell carcinoma based on imaging studies alone. Although researchers are currently studying several new techniques for the diagnosis of renal oncocytoma, a biopsy is often needed to confirm the diagnosis.

Is Renal Oncocytoma an inherited disorder?

Most renal oncocytomas are not inherited. They usually occur sporadically in people with no family history of tumors. However, in rare cases, they can occur in people with certain genetic syndromes such as tuberous sclerosis complex and Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome. Both of these conditions are inherited in an autosomal dominant manner.

Data Source : GARD