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      B-Mode Sonography in Acute Renal Failure

      Nephron Clinical Practice

      S. Karger AG

      Obstructive uropathy, Ultrasonography, Acute tubular necrosis, Hydronephrosis

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          Abstract

          B-mode sonography is an extremely useful and cost-effective method to eliminate urinary obstruction as a cause of acute renal failure and should be performed on all patients in whom obstruction is likely or in whom the cause of renal failure is not apparent. The threshold should be reduced in patients with solitary kidneys and sonography is probably indicated in all transplant patients. Sonography has very little utility in the management of other patients with acute renal failure. Although sonographic changes do occur in acute tubular necrosis, they are difficult to detect in the absence of baseline studies and are nonspecific.

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          Most cited references 10

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          Correlation of renal histopathology with sonographic findings.

          Judgments about irreversible renal disease are frequently based on the sonographic appearance of the kidneys. However, the sensitivity and specificity of sonography in identifying chronic, irreversible disease have never been determined, and the specific pathologic changes that increase renal cortical echogenicity have not been defined. We retrospectively compared sonographic parameters (length, quantitative echogenicity, cortical thickness, and parenchymal thickness) to biopsy findings of glomerular sclerosis, tubular atrophy, interstitial fibrosis, and interstitial inflammation in 207 patients. Echogenicity showed the strongest correlation with all 4 histologic parameters (r= 0.28-0.35). Renal size was significantly correlated with glomerular sclerosis (r=-0.26) and tubular atrophy (r= 0.20). Parenchymal thickness, but not cortical thickness, correlated with tubular atrophy (r=-0.23). By multivariate analysis, tubular atrophy and interstitial inflammation, but not interstitial fibrosis, were significant determinants of cortical echogenicity. Severe chronic disease (>50% sclerosed glomeruli or a score of 3 out of 5 or greater for tubular atrophy or interstitial fibrosis) was present in 69% and 47% of patients with combined renal length 20 cm, respectively (P= 1.0 (>liver echogenicity) and 1.0. Cortical echogenicity is the sonographic parameter that correlates best with renal histopathology. Although size or echogenicity alone are poor predictors of chronic irreversible disease, the likelihood of treatable disease in small kidneys with increased cortical echogenicity is very low.
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            Sonographic evaluation of renal failure.

            Sonography is a critical component of the evaluation of both acute and chronic renal failure; however, most nephrologists have a limited knowledge of this procedure. The acoustic properties, limited spectrum of pathological changes, and ease of visualization of the kidneys, coupled with the safety, simplicity, and low cost of sonography, make it the modality of choice for renal imaging. This review discusses the basics of sonography as they apply to the kidney and describes the findings encountered in the more common causes of renal failure. Although many sonographic findings are nonspecific, their diagnostic use is greatly enhanced by a familiarity with the clinical presentation and a thorough understanding of renal pathophysiological characteristics. Therefore, nephrologists should be knowledgeable about renal sonography and participate in its interpretation.
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              Renal sonography: can it be used more selectively in the setting of an elevated serum creatinine level?

              The objectives of our study were to (1) assess the outcomes resulting from the use of sonography in patients referred to our institution's ultrasound laboratory for an elevated serum creatinine level and (2) determine relevant clinical parameters in these patients to better triage them for sonography. We retrospectively identified and determined outcomes of 60 patients (20 women, 40 men; mean age, 61 years; range, 33 to 100 years) referred for sonographic evaluation because of an increased serum creatinine level (> or = 1.3 mg/dL). Ultrasound findings (hydronephrosis, renal size, and echogenicity) were correlated with clinical outcomes. Twenty-one patients (35%) had hydronephrosis, with 14 of these patients confirmed to be obstructed and five not obstructed. Two were indeterminate for obstruction. Eight of 14 obstructed patients were successfully treated. All obstructed patients had a suggestive history for obstruction with at least one of the following: pelvic mass (n = 9), stone disease (n = 4), or flank pain (n = 1). Only 2 of 44 patients, who were not obstructed, had any of these parameters (statistically significant difference, P < 0.0001). Thirty of the patients, who were not obstructed, had more likely alternative causes for renal failure, with sonography having no effect on patient management. Renal size and echogenicity had little effect on patient management. Sonography was efficacious in guiding management in patients with a suggestive history for obstruction (eg, pelvic mass, stone disease, or flank pain) but not in most patients who had no suggestive history and other more likely causes for renal failure.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                NEC
                Nephron Clin Pract
                10.1159/issn.1660-2110
                Nephron Clinical Practice
                S. Karger AG
                978-3-8055-8074-8
                978-3-318-01315-3
                1660-2110
                2006
                March 2006
                10 March 2006
                : 103
                : 2
                : c19-c23
                Affiliations
                Department of Medicine, Renal Division, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga., USA
                Article
                90604 Nephron Clin Pract 2006;103:c19–c23
                10.1159/000090604
                16543751
                © 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, References: 23, Pages: 1
                Product
                Self URI (application/pdf): https://www.karger.com/Article/Pdf/90604
                Categories
                Radiologic Imaging

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