Value of duplex Doppler ultrasonography in renal colic

Petrişor Geavlete, Dragoş Georgescu, Victor Cauni, Gheorghe Niţa
European Urology 2002, 41 (1): 71-8

OBJECTIVES: The aim of our study was to determine the value of duplex Doppler ultrasonography (DDU) in the patients' evolution with renal colic. The study of the resistive index (RI), difference of the RI (ARI) associated with a DDU intravesical recording (ureteral jets) were compared with renographic findings in renal colic.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Between October 1998 and January 2001 we studied 377 cases with suspected renal colic by intravenous pyelography (IVP), grey-scale ultrasonography and DDU with determination of the RI, the difference between the RI of ipsilateral and contralateral kidneys (ARI) and the amplitude (maximum length of the intravesical ureteral jet), velocity and frequency of the urine bolus. We considered normal values RI < or = 0.70 and ARI < or = 0.06. VP was used as a referee investigation and the ureteral intravesical jets were determined in standard conditions. All patients came to the hospital between 4 and 12 h after the onset of the renal colic.

RESULTS: We found four series of patients: 1, acute (complete) obstructed kidney (IVP nonfunctional) and dilatation at normal grey-scale, with normal contralateral kidney (n = 153). In this series we found RI > 0.70 in 87%, RI > 0.06 in 90% and absent ureteral intravesical jet of the obstructed kidney site in 89%; 2, acute (complete) obstructed kidney (IVP nonfunctional) without abnormalities at normal grey-scale, with normal contralateral kidney (n = 57). In this series we found RI > or = 0.70 in 73.5%, deltaRI > 0.06 in 82.5% of patients, absent or asymmetric ureteral intravesical jet in 80.7% of cases; 3, incomplete obstructed kidney (IVP with various degree of ureterohydronephrosis) with normal contralateral kidney (n = 96). In this series we found RI > or = 0.70 in 58.3% and deltaRI > 0.06 in 64.5% of patients, asymmetric ureteral intravesical jets in 74% of cases; 4, normal both kidneys normal IVP) were found in 71 cases (18.8%). In this series we found RI < 0.70 in 80.2%, deltaRI < or = 0.06 in 89% of cases, normal ureteral intravesical jets in 93% of cases. The mean RI was 0.76 (0.05) in 306 obstructed kidneys, significantly higher than the mean RI of 0.62 (0.05) in 448 normal kidneys (P < 0.001). The ARI in patients with obstruction was significantly higher than in patients with normal both kidneys, at 0.08 (0.05) and -0.001 (0.03), respectively (P < 0.001). The RI was sensitive in 75.5% and specific in 92.5% and ARI was sensitive in 80.7% and specific in 95.7% (versus IVP, considered the referee value). The presence of the intravesical ureteral jets of the renal colic side, associated with the values of RI (RI < or = 0.70) and deltaRI (deltaRI < or = 0.06), was followed by spontaneous passage of the stones in 71% of cases.

CONCLUSIONS: Renal DDU and consecutively, intravesical evaluation of ureteral jets could detect acute renal obstruction and, as a functional investigation, could have a predictive value regarding the ureteral stones passage. It could replace the IVP, being a sensitive and highly specific test.

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