Follow-Up Living Donor Research Living Donor Risks

adrenal incidentalomas in potential kidney donors

You’re probably asking “What is an adrenal incidentaloma?” Well, I took the trouble of googling it for you, and in short, it means a lesion or mass bigger than a certain size hanging out on one’s adrenal gland. Usually, these AIs are found incidentally, during a medical scan of some sort that have nothing to do with the adrenal gland.

In other words, asymptomatic folks can have AIs.


The researchers decided to look for these little buggars in potential living kidney donors. Makes sense since they’re already exposing them to a battery of tests and scans anyway. Apparently 4.2% of their 673 subjects did have these suckers, and according to the paper, that’s a lot.

What I’m wondering, and what the authors don’t say, is: Which adrenal had the AI and which kidney was removed for donation? And secondarily, if the AI was on the left kidney, and the left kidney was removed, did the severing of the blood to the left adrenal (in combination with the AI) cause the LKD any post-donation adrenal malfunction? Or vice versa? In other words, did any of these “healthy, asymptomic” people develop adrenal issues post-donation?

Something tells me the researchers never considered those things as possibilities.



Grossman, A., Koren, R., Tirosh, A., Michowiz, R., Shohat, Z., Rahamimov, R., Mor, E., Shimon, I., & Robenshtok, E. (2015). Prevalence and clinical characteristics of adrenal incidentalomas in potential kidney donors Endocrine Research, 41 (2), 98-102 DOI: 10.3109/07435800.2015.1076455

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