Can a Modified Bosniak Classification System Risk Stratify Pediatric Cystic Renal Masses?

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid



We characterize and apply the modified Bosniak classification system to a cohort of children with cystic renal lesions and known surgical pathology.

Materials and Methods:

We identified all patients at our institution with cystic renal masses who also underwent surgery for these lesions. Patients without available preoperative imaging or pathology were excluded. All radiological imaging was independently reviewed by a pediatric radiologist blinded to pathological findings. Imaging characteristics (size, border, septations, calcifications, solid components, vascularity) were recorded from the most recent preoperative ultrasounds and computerized tomograms. The modified Bosniak classification system was applied to these scans and then correlated with final pathology.


A total of 22 patients met study criteria. Median age at surgery was 6.1 years (range 11 months to 16.8 years). Of the patients 12 (54.5%) underwent open nephrectomy, 6 (27.3%) open partial nephrectomy, 2 (9.1%) laparoscopic cyst decortication, 1 (4.5%) open renal biopsy and 1 (4.5%) laparoscopic partial nephrectomy. Final pathology was benign in 9 cases (41%), intermediate in 6 (27%) and malignant in 7 (32%). All malignant lesions were modified Bosniak class 4, all intermediate lesions were modified class 3 or 4 and 8 of 9 benign lesions (89%) were modified class 1 or 2.


Cystic renal lesions in children with a modified Bosniak class of 1 or 2 were most often benign, while class 3 or 4 lesions warranted surgical excision since more than 90% of masses harbored intermediate or malignant pathology. The modified Bosniak classification system appears to allow for a reasonable clinical risk stratification of pediatric cystic renal masses.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles