Multilocular cystic nephroma: MR imaging appearance with current techniques, including gadolinium enhancement

J Magn Reson Imaging. 1996 Jan-Feb;6(1):145-8. doi: 10.1002/jmri.1880060126.


The purpose of the study was to define the MRI appearance of multilocular cystic nephroma (MLCN), using current MR techniques, including gadolinium (Gd)-enhanced sequences. Seven patients with MLCN underwent MR imaging with the following sequences: T1-weighted spin echo with fat suppression (T1FS, five patients), T1-weighted spoiled gradient echo (SGE, seven patients), T2-weighted fast spin echo (two patients), and Gd-enhanced T1FS (seven patients) and SGE (seven patients). MLCN was histologically proven by resection of the mass in six patients and by observation of typical imaging features with stability in appearance over a 6-month period in one patient. Lesion morphology and signal intensity (SI) features were retrospectively evaluated. MRI features of MLCN included a solitary cystic lesion with thin internal septations in six patients and a cluster of closely grouped cysts similar in size in one patient. Individual cystic spaces demonstrated SI, varying from low to high on T1-weighted images in three patients and demonstrated low-to-intermediate SI in four patients. Herniation of the lesions into the renal collecting system and thin enhancing septa were demonstrated in all patients. A complex cystic renal lesion with enhancing septa and herniation into the renal collecting system are the characteristic MR findings of MLCN. The direct multiplanar capability of MR may optimally show the relationship of MLCN to the renal pelvis and, thus, facilitate correct diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Contrast Media
  • Female
  • Gadolinium*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Diseases, Cystic / diagnosis*
  • Kidney Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging* / methods
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Wilms Tumor / diagnosis*


  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium