Other Names for this Disease
- Idiopathic retroperitoneal fibrosis
- Ormond's disease
What are the symptoms of retroperitoneal fibrosis?
What causes retroperitoneal fibrosis?
How might retroperitoneal fibrosis be treated?
What is the typical prognosis for patients with retroperitoneal fibrosis?
- Dull pain in the abdomen that increases with time
- Swelling of one leg
- Decreased circulation in the legs leading to pain and discoloration
- Severe abdominal pain with hemorrhage due to ischemic bowel
Late symptoms of retroperitoneal fibrosis may include:
- Decreased urine output
- Total lack of urine (anuria)
- Nausea, vomiting, changes in thinking caused by kidney failure and the resulting build-up of toxic chemicals in the blood.
- Asbestos exposure
- Neoplasms (tumor)
- Use of certain drugs
Surgery to remove the mass and free the ureters may be required. In some cases, the ureters will be moved to a different position in the body or wrapped in fat tissue harvested from other areas to prevent recurrence of the fibrosis. Stents (drainage tubes) placed in the ureter or in the renal pelvis may provide short-term relief of the symptoms until the mass can be removed. Corticosteroid therapy (a type of anti-inflammatory medicine) may help if surgery can't be done due to other medical conditions. In addition, some doctors use the drug tamoxifen to treat this condition.
- Vorvick LJ. Retroperitoneal fibrosis. MedlinePlus. March 17, 2011; http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000463.htm. Accessed 10/15/2013.
- Vaglio A, Salvarani C, Buzio C. Retroperitoneal fibrosis. Lancet. 2006; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?Db=pubmed&Cmd=DetailsSearch&Term=16427494%5Buid%5D. Accessed 10/15/2013.
- Goldoni M, Bonini S, Urban ML, Palmisano A, De Palma G, Galletti E, Coggiola M, Buzio C, Mutti A, Vaglio A. Asbestos and smoking as risk factors for idiopathic retroperitoneal fibrosis: a case-control study. Ann Intern Med. 2014 Aug 5; 161(3):181-8. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25089862. Accessed 10/15/2014.