Following nephrectomy, living kidney donors experience an immediate increment in renal parenchymal volume (RPV) in the remaining kidney, Chinese researchers reported in International Urology and Nephrology (2014;46:743-747).

In a study of 45 living kidney donors, researchers use magnetic resonance imaging to measure the size of the non-transplanted kidney before surgery and 3 and 7 days post-operatively. The RPV of the remaining kidney was 118 cm3 before nephrectomy.

It increased in size by 21.23% to 143.13 cm3 at 3 days and by 24.17% to 146.60 cm3 at 7 days. The RPV at 7 days was directly related to its initial preoperative size. Results also showed that kidneys with a 20% or greater increase in RPV after 7 days are more likely to show a further significant increase in glomerular filtration rate at 1 year.

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