Retroaortic left renal vein

Case contributed by Dr Matthew Lukies


Abdominal pain for investigation. Incidental anatomical variant identified.

Patient Data

Age: 85 years
Gender: Female
  • retroaortic left renal vein
  • double right renal veins emptying directly into the inferior vena cava
  • cyst at the inferior pole of the right kidney

Case Discussion

Retroaortic left renal vein is an anatomic variant typically identified as an incidental finding on imaging. Whilst usually asymptomatic, a retroaortic left renal vein can be compressed by the aorta and cause venous congestion of the kidney or left gonadal vein, leading to varicocele (male) or pelvic congestion syndrome (female). A retroaortic left renal vein is also important to note prior to performing any renal/retroperitoneal surgery.

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Case information

rID: 45703
Published: 5th Jun 2016
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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