Man in Brazil Discovers He Has Three Kidneysadmin
According to a recent report in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), a 38-year-old man in Brazil, who originally presented with lower back pain associated with a herniated disk, was found to have been born with three kidneys; a normal-appearing left kidney and two fused kidneys, IFLScience.com reported.
“We have never seen anything like this,” Dr. Renato Foresto, one of the case study authors from Hospital do Rim in São Paulo told IFLScience. “The surprise was great, followed by concern there was something wrong with the patient’s health.” The doctors found, however, that, aside from the slipped disk, the man appeared to be in good health. His renal function was completely normal.
According to the doctors, the man’s kidneys are the result of an uncommon congenital abnormality that likely occurred during the embryonic development when a single primitive kidney-like structure splits in two. While the doctors in São Paulo may have never seen anything like this before, this condition has been documented a number of times before. Known as a supernumerary kidney, cases have been reported in medical literature as early as 1915.
While less than 100 cases have been reported, there’s a strong possibility there are more, as many people are never actually aware that they have the condition. “Affected persons are commonly asymptomatic, and as in this case, the condition may not become known until imaging is performed for another reason,” the doctors in this case explained.