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Wilms Tumor and Other Childhood Kidney Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)

Health Professional Version

Cystic Partially Differentiated Nephroblastoma

General Information About Cystic Partially Differentiated Nephroblastoma

Cystic partially differentiated nephroblastoma is a rare cystic variant of Wilms tumor (1%), with unique pathologic and clinical characteristics. It is composed entirely of cysts, and their thin septa are the only solid portion of the tumor. The septa contain blastemal cells in any amount with or without embryonal stromal or epithelial cell type. Several pathologic features distinguish this neoplasm from standard Wilms tumor.

Recurrence has been reported following tumor spillage at surgery.[1][Level of evidence: 3iiiA]

(Refer to the Wilms tumor Clinical Features and Diagnostic and Staging Evaluation sections of this summary for more information about the clinical features and diagnostic evaluation of childhood kidney tumors.)

Standard Treatment Options for Cystic Partially Differentiated Nephroblastoma

Standard treatment options for cystic partially differentiated nephroblastoma include the following:

  1. Surgery. Patients with stage I disease have a 100% survival rate with surgery alone.[2]
  2. Surgery and adjuvant chemotherapy. Patients with stage II disease have an excellent outcome with tumor resection followed by postoperative vincristine and dactinomycin.[2]


  1. Baker JM, Viero S, Kim PC, et al.: Stage III cystic partially differentiated nephroblastoma recurring after nephrectomy and chemotherapy. Pediatr Blood Cancer 50 (1): 129-31, 2008. [PUBMED Abstract]
  2. Blakely ML, Shamberger RC, Norkool P, et al.: Outcome of children with cystic partially differentiated nephroblastoma treated with or without chemotherapy. J Pediatr Surg 38 (6): 897-900, 2003. [PUBMED Abstract]
  • Updated: August 15, 2014