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MR urography evaluation of obstructive uropathy

  • MR Urography
  • Published:
Pediatric Radiology Aims and scope

Abstract

Hydronephrosis and the evaluation of obstructive uropathy are the most common indications for MR urography in our practice. Typically our patients fall into one of two groups: infants with antenatal hydronephrosis and older children who present with abdominal pain, hematuria or urinary tract infection. Obstruction in children is usually chronic and partial. Intermittent episodes of increased pressure occur when the urine production exceeds the capacity for drainage. MR urography uses a fluid and diuretic challenge to assess the hydronephrotic kidney. High-quality anatomic images provide a morphologic assessment of the hydronephrotic system. Although it is relatively straightforward to determine if a system is not obstructed on the basis of the renal transit time (RTT), no single parameter is adequate to fully characterize obstruction. By evaluating the changes in signal intensity in the renal parenchyma following contrast administration, the hydronephrotic systems are classified as compensated or decompensated. Delayed RTT and the presence of urine-contrast levels indicate stasis. Calyceal transit time and the difference between the volumetric and the Patlak differential renal function (vDRF−pDRF) are measures of the physiologic changes within the kidney. Additionally, MR urography provides prognostic information by assessing the quality of the renal parenchyma and identifying uropathy preoperatively. MR urography combines both anatomic and functional information in a single test and is capable of providing a comprehensive evaluation of obstructive uropathy that could ultimately help select those patients most likely to benefit from surgical intervention.

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Correspondence to J. Damien Grattan-Smith.

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Dr. Grattan-Smith receives grant support from Siemens. The use of a medical device or pharmaceutical that is “off-label,” i.e. a use not described on the product’s label, is described in this article.

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Grattan-Smith, J.D., Little, S.B. & Jones, R.A. MR urography evaluation of obstructive uropathy. Pediatr Radiol 38 (Suppl 1), 49–69 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00247-007-0667-y

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00247-007-0667-y

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