Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)

Summary

An Intravenous Pyelogram is a test to study how the urinary system (kidneys, ureters, bladder) looks and works. It can be used to diagnose symptoms such as blood in the urine or pain in the side or lower back. It is particularly beneficial when looking for blockage due to kidney stones. This exam requires an intravenous injection of contrast dye.

Your referring clinician will give you instructions on preparing for your IVP study.  You will be asked to stop eating or drinking at midnight the day prior to your exam and have nothing by mouth until after your study is complete.

You should inform your clinician of any medical conditions or recent illness, as well as any allergies to medications or iodinated contrast material.  If you take medications such as glucophage, metformin, or glucovance alert the staff at SSR as you will need specific instructions to follow prior to your exam.

FAQ

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Exam Prep & Overview

The technologist will review your history and explain the procedure. You will be positioned on the table on your back and instructed to lie still. Scout x-rays will be taken of the kidneys and bladder. An IV will be placed into the patient’s arm or hand through which iodine containing contrast material will be injected. The contrast material is processed by the kidneys making them appear bright white on the images.

A series of timed images is taken to watch the progression of contrast from kidneys to bladder. During the exam, you will be asked to roll on the table to allow different views to be taken. A compression band may be placed around the abdomen to better visualize the kidneys and ureters. Near the end of the exam, you will be asked to empty your bladder. The contrast materials will not color your urine or cause discomfort. Then an additional image will be taken to see how well the bladder empties.

A radiologist will review your images and determine if any additional images are necessary. The study is usually completed within an hour but, occasionally, the exam may take longer due to some kidneys emptying at a slower rate.

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