A renal angiolipoma is a type of non-cancerous tumor that can develop in one or both kidneys, usually as a result of a medical condition known as tuberous sclerosis. If the mass grows large enough, it can cause a loss of kidney function, and a rupture of the tumor could pose life-threatening complications if not treated promptly. The standard treatment for a renal angiolipoma that has grown large enough to cause problems is a medical procedure referred to as embolization. Any questions or concerns involving a renal angiolipoma or the most appropriate treatment measures for an individual situation should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.
The most common benign type of kidney tumor is the renal angiolipoma. This mass is typically made up of a combination of smooth muscle cells, fat cells, and blood vessels. This condition is believed to be caused by mutations of the genes responsible for cell proliferation and growth. While these tumors can appear on the kidneys of those with no additional health concerns, they are most frequently found among those with tuberous sclerosis, a genetic disease that causes the growth of benign tumors in various organs of the body.
In many cases, a renal angiolipoma does not cause any noticeable symptoms, especially if the tumor is small. As the mass grows larger, kidney pain may develop and the patient may begin to notice blood in the urine on occasion. Kidney function may become compromised, sometimes resulting in the need for dialysis. The rupture of a renal angiolipoma is a medical emergency, and symptoms often involve sudden and severe kidney or abdominal pain, fever, and vomiting. Internal bleeding caused by the rupture can be life threatening if not treated right away.
A small renal angiolipoma may not require any specific medical treatment, although the patient will usually be monitored for possible signs of developing complications. Larger tumors are usually treated with a non-surgical medical procedure known as an embolization. This procedure involves the use of a catheter and other small instruments to block blood flow to the tumor in an effort to cause the mass to shrink. In more complicated situations, surgery to remove all or part of the tumor may become necessary. The doctor will discuss individualized treatment options with the patient as well as any potential risks associated with the procedure, such as the possibility of organ or nerve damage as a result of the procedure.