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Urology/Mild Prominence of renal cortex of right kidney

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Question
Dr. Leslie,

I recently had an ultrasound of my abdomen due to ongoing RUQ pain.  When I met with my GI doctor, I fully expected something to show up regarding my gallbladder; however, was shocked when the report mentioned the following: "Mild prominence of the renal cortex in the midpolar/lower pole region, Difficult to exclude underlying mass.  Consider further evaluation with abdominal CT".  I haven't had any kidney-related issues.  My GI doctor has submitted a referral to see a Urologist.

Of course, seeing the word "mass" has me concerned and there are a ton of questions running through my mind: 1) are such findings fairly common? 2) what additional tests are usually ordered in this situation? 3) is an MRI as accurate as a CT scan for further evaluation?

Thank you in advance for addressing my concerns/questions.

Answer
Carey

This could be a normal variant called a dromedary hump. Or it could be more serious. Usually we start with a CT urogram. If that suggests a mass or tumor, see the urologist. If the test is normal, you can save yourself the need for an appointment.

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Stephen W. Leslie, MD

Expertise

Questions concerning erectile dysfunction, kidney stones and prostate disorders including prostate cancer. I have a special interest in kidney stone disease prevention.

Experience

Full time practicing urologist with 30 years experience. Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief of Urology at Creighton University Medical Center. Editor in Chief of eMedicine Urology internet textbook. Author of only NIH approved book written for patients by a urologist on the subject of kidney stones "The Kidney Stones Handbook". Inventor of the "Parachute" and "Escape" kidney stone baskets and the "Calculus" stone prevention analysis computer program.

Organizations
American Urological Association, Ohio State Medical Association, Sexual Medicine Society

Publications
Men's Health, Journal of Urology, Urology, Healthwatch Magazine, Emergency Medicine Monthly, eMedicine, "The Kidney Stones Handbook", and numerous articles in various newspapers. He is also the editor of the Urology Board Review by McGraw-Hill used by urologists to study for their Board Certification Examinations.

Education/Credentials
Graduate of New York Medical College with residencies completed at Metropolitan Hospital New York, Albany Medical Center and University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Awards and Honors
Thirlby Award of the American Urological Association. Rated as one the country's Best Urologists by the Independent Consumer's Research Institute

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