Kidney tumor
Adult renal cell carcinoma
Acquired cystic disease associated renal cell carcinoma

Author: Sean Williamson, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 30 January 2017, last major update June 2012

Copyright: (c) 2003-2017,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Acquired cystic disease [title] associated renal cell carcinoma

Cite this page: Acquired cystic disease associated renal cell carcinoma. website. Accessed August 17th, 2017.
Definition / general
  • Unique morphology of renal cell carcinoma arising in kidneys with acquired cystic disease due to end stage renal disease (ESRD), characterized by papillary, solid, eosinophilic and clear cell-like areas with tumoral calcium oxalate crystals (Am J Surg Pathol 2006;30:141)
  • Acquired cystic disease occurs in 35% of long term dialysis patients; of these, 6% develop carcinoma

Clear cell papillary renal cell carcinoma:
  • (Either cystic or noncystic) is the other "unique" tumor in ESRD (although may occur in otherwise normal kidneys)
  • Other tumors in ESRD have features similar to sporadic cases
Clinical features
Case reports
Gross description
  • Dominant mass in 36% of kidneys, often multifocal, usually 3 cm or less
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Microcystic architecture, abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm with grade 3 nuclei, intratumoral oxalate crystals (Am J Surg Pathol 2005;29:443)
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on other servers:

Calcium oxalate crystals

Various images

Cytology description
  • Moderately cellular, papillary clusters of polygonal to columnar cells with abundant eosinophilic granular cytoplasm, round and central nuclei, finely granular chromatin, prominent central Fuhrman grade 3 nucleoli (Diagn Cytopathol 2008;36:344)
Negative stains
Differential diagnosis