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      Tuberculosis of the genitourinary system-Urinary tract tuberculosis: Renal tuberculosis-Part I

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          Tuberculosis (TB) remains a worldwide scourge and its incidence appears to be increasing due to various factors, such as the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The insidious onset and non-specific constitutional symptoms of genitourinary tuberculosis (GUTB) often lead to delayed diagnosis and rapid progression to a non-functioning kidney. Due to hematogenous dissemination of TB, there is a potential risk of involvement of the contralateral kidney too. Imaging plays an important role in the making of a timely diagnosis and in the planning of treatment, and thus helps to avoid complications such as renal failure. Imaging of GUTB still remains a challenge, mainly on account of the dearth of literature, especially related to the use of the newer modalities such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This two-part article is a comprehensive review of the epidemiology, pathophysiology, and imaging findings in renal TB. Various imaging features of GUTB are outlined, from the pathognomonic lobar calcification on plain film, to finer early changes such as loss of calyceal sharpness and papillary necrosis on intravenous urography (IVU); to uneven caliectasis and urothelial thickening, in the absence of renal pelvic dilatation, as well as the hitherto unreported ‘lobar caseation’ on ultrasonography (USG). Well-known complications of GUTB such as sinus tracts, fistulae and amyloidosis are described, along with the relatively less well-known complications such as tuberculous interstitial nephritis (TIN), which may remain hidden because of its ‘culture negative’ nature and thus lead to renal failure. The second part of the article reviews the computed tomography (CT) and MRI features of GUTB and touches upon future imaging techniques along with imaging of TB in transplant recipients and in immunocompromised patients.

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          Urinary tract infections are the most common urologic disease in the United States and annually account for over 7 million office and 1 million emergency department visits. In adults, diagnosis of urinary tract infection is typically based on characteristic clinical features and abnormal laboratory values. Imaging is usually reserved for patients who do not respond to therapy and for those whose clinical presentation is either atypical or potentially life threatening. Urinary tract infection typically originates in the urinary bladder; when it migrates to the kidney or is seeded there hematogenously, a tubulointerstitial inflammatory reaction ensues, involving the renal pelvis and parenchyma. The condition is characterized as pyelonephritis. Complicated and uncomplicated pyelonephritis, xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis, and tuberculosis are all urinary tract infections for which imaging evaluation adds diagnostic information important for patient care. Computed tomography (CT), when performed before, immediately after, and at delayed intervals from contrast material injection, is the preferred modality for evaluating acute bacterial pyelonephritis. CT is also preferred over conventional radiography and ultrasonography (US) for assessing emphysematous pyelonephritis. Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis is a chronic granulomatous process, induced by recurrent bacterial urinary tract infection. Although US is useful in the diagnosis of this condition, CT is the main imaging tool, as it provides highly specific findings and accurate assessment of the extrarenal extent of disease, which is essential for surgical planning. The increasing prevalence of tuberculosis and continued emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains have significance for genitourinary radiologists, as the urinary tract is the most common extrapulmonary site of tuberculosis. Familiarity with the renal manifestations of the disease--pelvoinfundibular strictures, papillary necrosis, cortical low-attenuation masses, scarring, and calcification--will help in the diagnosis, even in the absence of documented pulmonary disease.
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            Tuberculosis has shown a resurgence in nonendemic populations in recent years, a phenomenon that has been attributed to factors such as increased migration and the human immunodeficiency virus epidemic. Although the thorax is most frequently involved, tuberculosis may involve any of a number of organ systems (eg, the respiratory, cardiac, central nervous, musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal, and genitourinary systems), and timely diagnosis of the disease is paramount, since delayed treatment is associated with severe morbidity. Unfortunately, a history of infection with or exposure to tuberculosis may or may not be present, and evidence of active tuberculosis is present in less than 50% of cases. A negative tuberculin skin test does not in itself exclude infection. Furthermore, the clinical and radiologic features of tuberculosis may mimic those of many other diseases. Therefore, although in many cases biopsy or culture specimens are required to make the definitive diagnosis, it is imperative that radiologists and clinicians understand the typical distribution, patterns, and imaging manifestations of tuberculosis. (c) RSNA, 2007.
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              Assessment of renal fibrosis with diffusion-weighted MR imaging: study with murine model of unilateral ureteral obstruction.

              To test, in a murine model of unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO), whether the magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-derived apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) changes during the progression of renal fibrosis and correlates with the histopathologic changes observed in renal fibrogenesis. This study was approved by the institutional animal care and use committee. A UUO was created in each of 14 mice. In five mice, longitudinal diffusion-weighted (DW) imaging was performed before the UUO (day 0) and on days 3 and 7 after the UUO and was followed by histopathologic analysis. The nine remaining mice were examined with cross-sectional studies on days 0 (n = 4) and 3 (n = 5). ADCs were measured with a spin-echo echo-planar sequence at five b values ranging from 350 to 1200 sec/mm(2). Differences in ADC among the time points and between the sides were assessed by using Tukey-Kramer and Student t tests, respectively. ADC was correlated with cell density and alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA, a marker of myofibroblasts) expression at linear regression analysis. Histopathologic examination revealed typical renal fibrosis on the side with UUO. The ADC decreased over time on the UUO side, from (1.02 +/- 0.06 [standard deviation]) x 10(-3) mm(2)/sec on day 0 to (0.70 +/- 0.08) x 10(-3) mm(2)/sec on day 3 (P < .001) and (0.57 +/- 0.10) x 10(-3) mm(2)/sec on day 7 (P < .001). The percentage change in ADC was greater on the UUO side than on the contralateral side on days 3 (29% +/- 9, P = .05) and 7 (44% +/- 11, P < .01). ADC correlated with both increased cell density and increased alpha-SMA expression (P < .001 for both correlations). An ADC decrease in renal fibrosis is associated with an increased number of cells, including fibroblasts. ADC has the potential to serve as a sensitive noninvasive biomarker of renal fibrosis. Copyright RSNA, 2010

                Author and article information

                Indian J Radiol Imaging
                Indian J Radiol Imaging
                The Indian Journal of Radiology & Imaging
                Medknow Publications & Media Pvt Ltd (India )
                Jan-Mar 2013
                : 23
                : 1
                : 46-63
                Department of Radiology, LTM Medical College and LTM General Hospital, Mumbai, India
                [1 ]Department of Radiology, University Health Network, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Prof. Suleman Merchant, Head - Department of Radiology and Dean, LTM Medical College and LTM General Hospital, Mumbai, India. E-mail: suleman_merchant@
                Copyright: © Indian Journal of Radiology and Imaging

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Genitourinary and Obstetric Radiology


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