When should imaging studies be used in the diagnosis of urinary tract infection (UTI) in men?

Updated: Jan 02, 2020
  • Author: John L Brusch, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Imaging studies

Consider imaging and urologic intervention in patients with the following:

  • History of kidney stones, especially struvite stones: Potential for urosepsis

  • Diabetes: Susceptibility to emphysematous pyelonephritis and may require immediate nephrectomy; diabetic patients may also develop obstruction from necrotic renal papillae that are sloughed into the collecting system and obstruct the ureter

  • Polycystic kidneys: Prone to abscess formation

  • Tuberculosis: Prone to developing ureteral strictures, fungus balls, and stones

If concomitant obstructive uropathy is suspected, this is an emergent condition that requires prompt intervention, including the following imaging studies of the urinary system:

  • Ultrasonography

  • Contrasted computed tomography (CT) scanning or helical CT scanning (currently preferred by most experts)

  • Intravenous pyelography (IVP) has been replaced by CT scanning techniques and ultrasonography because of its substantial radiation and the necessity of using radiographic dye

See Workup for more detail.

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