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Case report
Spontaneous renoalimentary fistula as a complication of upper tract urothelial carcinoma: unknown complication of a rare disease
  1. Rahul Jena1,
  2. Sanjoy Kumar Sureka1,
  3. Surojit Ruidas2 and
  4. Hira Lal2
  1. 1 Urology and Renal Transplant, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India
  2. 2 Radiodiagnosis, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Hira Lal; hiralal2007{at}


Fistulae of the upper urinary tract with the alimentary tract are rare. Most cases of renoalimentary fistulae are secondary to penetrating trauma, which may be iatrogenic or due to locally invasive benign infective processes or complicated nephrolithiasis, or following surgical procedures. Spontaneous renoalimentary fistulae developing secondary to locally advanced malignancies, namely renal cell carcinoma, are very rare, and unknown due to upper tract transitional cell carcinoma. We present a case where a 60-year-old man, presented with clinical symptoms suggestive of upper gastrointestinal tract pathology, with no urological complaints and was diagnosed to have a renoalimentary fistula on cross-sectional imaging and upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with histopathology of duodenal growth biopsy showing high-grade transitional cell carcinoma. Due to unresectable nature of this mass, this patient had a gastric and biliary diversion and was started on palliative chemotherapy. Renoalimentary fistulae due to benign inflammatory causes may be treated by nephrectomy with or without resection of the involved bowel segment. However, all malignant fistulae have to be treated as locally advanced tumours and en bloc resection should be attempted whenever feasible.

  • gastrointestinal system
  • urinary and genital tract disorders
  • radiology
  • urological surgery
  • urological cancer
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  • Contributors RJ, SKS and HL conducted the study including patient recruitment, data collection and data analysis. RJ and SR did the literature review and prepared the manuscript draft. All the authors had complete access to study data. The manuscript was finally reviewed by SR and approved by HL.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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