Cholesterol Emboli Introduction Clinical Setting

Patients with significant atherosclerosis are also at risk for cholesterol embolization due to dislodgment of atheromatous plaque material. These emboli shower organs downstream from the site of origin in the aorta, and

Figure 10.3. Cholesterol emboli in artery with surrounding mononuclear and early fibrotic reaction (PAS).

thus often involve the kidney, skin, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, adrenals, pancreas, and testes. Cholesterol emboli may occur spontaneously or after an invasive vascular procedure. This entity mimics vasculitis clinically, and presents with acute renal failure, new-onset or exacerbated hypertension, and eosinophilia (16-18). In some patients, there is associated presumed secondary FSGS, with proteinuria.

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