11 November 2008
Unilateral parenchymatous kidney disease associated with high blood pressure represents a potentially curable form of hypertension. Surgery may normalize blood pressure in a substantial number of these patients. Curable renal parenchymatous hypertension includes unilateral tubulointerstitial kidney diseases such as chronic pyelonephritis, reflux nephropathy, segmental hypoplasia and radiation nephritis, hydronephrosis, simple renal cysts, traumatic kidney lesions and renal tumors associated with high blood pressure. Renal ischemia and in turn activation of the renin angiotensin system is involved in the pathogenesis of hypertension in most of these patients. In patients with unilateral kidney disease and hypertension, both an operative and a medical therapeutic approach have a high success rate. Good candidates for nephrectomy are young patients with severe hypertension, strict unilateral disease, normal plasma creatinine levels and minimal function of the involved kidney. In unilateral hydronephrosis reconstructive surgery or nephrectomy may cure or improve hypertension in the vast majority of the patients. Surgically correctable hypertension has also been reported in some patients with large renal cysts and renal tumors (hemangiopericytoma, Wilm’s tumor, hypernephroma, renal pelvic tumor).