Which imaging studies are indicated in the workup of bladder dysfunction?

Updated: Jan 04, 2019
  • Author: Gregory T Carter, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Elizabeth A Moberg-Wolff, MD  more...
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Answer

Ultrasonography is used for the routine assessment of the upper urinary tract. Additionally, it may be used to identify the presence of ureteral obstruction, scarring, masses, and either renal or bladder calculi.

Plain radiography of the urinary tract, bladder, and kidneys is used in conjunction with ultrasonography to determine the presence of radiopaque calculi (see the image below). Excretory urography or intravenous pyelography (IVP) may be used for visualization of the collecting system. Isotope studies (eg, technetium-99m dimercaptosuccinic acid [DMSA]) are used for evaluation of renal cortex function.

Large stellate urinary bladder stone. Image courte Large stellate urinary bladder stone. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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