Bilateral Extensive Emphysematous Pyelonephritis

Ing-Kit Lee, Ching-Jung Hsieh, Jien-Wei Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objective: We report a case involving a patient with bilateral emphysematous pyelonephritis (EPN) who was successfully treated with antibiotics and nephrostomy sparing nephrectomy. Case Presentation and Intervention: A 54-year-old diabetic man presented with the chief complaint of progressive abdominal pain for 10 days. Blood tests indicated acute renal failure and hyperglycemic hyperosmolar state. An abdominal radiograph disclosed gas distributed over regions where the bilateral kidneys are located and the right para-lumbosacral area. Computed tomography revealed bilateral enlarged kidneys with the presence of gas in the renal parenchyma and renal pelvis, left peri-renal space, bilateral ureter, bladder, prostate gland and right scrotum. Cultures of urine and blood grew Escherichia coli. The patient was successfully treated with antibiotics coupled with nephrostomy. Conclusion: Timely recognition and initiation of effective antibiotic therapy and nephrostomy may cure the patient with bilateral EPN, while sparing nephrectomy. Regarding clinical manifestations, EPN is nonspecific; hence, radiographs should be taken for diabetic patients with abdominal pain ( especially those with poorly controlled blood sugar) to enable early diagnosis of potential EPN. Copyright (C) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)149-151
JournalMedical Principles and Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2009


  • Bilateral emphysematous pyelonephritis
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Hyperglycemic hyperosmolar state
  • Nephrostomy


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