Retroperitoneal fibrosis

Retroperitoneal fibrosis
Retroperitoneal fibrosis
Classification and external resources
ICD-10 N13.5
ICD-9 593.4
DiseasesDB 11445
eMedicine radio/605 med/3664
MeSH D012185

Retroperitoneal fibrosis or Ormond's disease is a disease featuring the proliferation of fibrous tissue in the retroperitoneum, the compartment of the body containing the kidneys, aorta, renal tract and various other structures. It may present with lower back pain, renal failure, hypertension, deep vein thrombosis and other obstructive symptoms. It is named after John Kelso Ormond, who rediscovered the condition in 1948.[1][2][3]



Its association with various immune-related conditions and response to immunosuppression have led to speculations as to the autoimmune etiology of idiopathic RPF.[4] One-third of the cases are secondary to malignancy, medication (methysergide, hydralazine, beta blockers), aortic aneurysm or certain infections.


The diagnosis of retroperitoneal fibrosis cannot be made on the basis of results of laboratory studies. CT is the best diagnostic modality: a confluent mass surrounding the aorta can be seen on a CT scan. Although biopsy is not usually recommended, it is appropriate when malignancy or infection is suspected. Biopsy should also be done if the location of fibrosis is atypical or if there is an inadequate response to initial treatment.[4]


In the absence of severe urinary tract obstruction (which generally requires surgery with omental wrapping), treatment is generally with glucocorticoids initially, followed by DMARDs either as steroid-sparing agents or if refractory on steroids.[5] The SERM tamoxifen has shown to improve the condition in various small trials, although the exact mechanism of its action remains unclear. Associations include:


  1. ^ Albarran-Ormond syndrome at Who Named It?
  2. ^ Ormond JK (1948). "Bilateral ureteral obstruction due to envelopment and compression by an inflammatory retroperitoneal process". J Urol. 59 (6): 1072–9. PMID 18858051. 
  3. ^ Ormond JK (October 1965). "Idiopathic retroperitoneal fibrosis: a discussion of the etiology". J Urol. 94 (4): 385–90. PMID 5839568. 
  4. ^ a b Vaglio A, Salvarani C, Buzio C (January 2006). "Retroperitoneal fibrosis". Lancet 367 (9506): 241–51. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(06)68035-5. PMID 16427494. 
  5. ^ van Bommel EF (July 2002). "Retroperitoneal fibrosis". Neth J Med 60 (6): 231–42. PMID 12365466. 

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