University Of Tasmania

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Anatomical variations of the renal arterial vasculature: An Australian perspective

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 18:22 authored by Tardo, DT, Briggs, C, Ahern, G, Pitman, A, Sankar SinhaSankar Sinha

Introduction: Variations of the renal arteries have been studied and published across various population groups, but similar information for the ethnically diverse nation of Australia is lacking. This study describes the pattern of renal artery anomalies in a section of the Australian population based on computed tomography (CT) angiograms of the abdomen and cadaveric dissection.

Methods: The renal arterial vasculature of 594 kidneys from 300 subjects (28 cadavers, 272 CT) was studied. The number and pattern of renal arteries were categorised on the basis of laterality, point of origin and termination in the kidney (superior pole, hilum and inferior pole), symmetry and sex.

Results: Multiple renal arteries were discovered in 22% of subjects and 12.12% of kidneys. The most common pattern observed was the presence of one variant renal artery (93.1%), compared to the finding of two (5.6%) and three (1.4%) multiple arteries. The aorta was the most frequent site of origin for anomalous vessels, while the hilum was the predominant point of entry. No significant difference was established between left‐ and right‐sided kidneys (13.8% vs. 12.5%; P = 0.627); however, unilateral distribution was more common than bilateral additional renal arteries (16.7% vs. 3.4%; P < 0.01), and variations among males were more than females (27.2% vs. 15.2%; P < 0.05). A higher rate of multiple renal arteries was noted in cadaveric dissections compared to CT images (46.4% vs. 19.5%; P < 0.01).

Conclusion: These findings provide application of an evidence‐based teaching tool that facilitates education regarding renal arterial variations in Australia.


Publication title

Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Oncology










Tasmanian School of Medicine


Blackwell Publishing Asia

Place of publication


Rights statement

© 2017 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists

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Clinical health not elsewhere classified

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