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Kidney ultrasound showed shadow over half kidney. What could this be?

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Pediatrician, Infectious Diseases
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 1528 Questions
Hi my 5 year old son had an kidney ultrasound today, the doctor said even after he had emptied his bladder it still wasn't empty also on his left kidney there was shadowing, like his kidney was half hiding behind the shadow, what could this be.. The doctor was really quick to say a specialist will be in touch and left the room really fast after the scan was done, So I'm left wondering what could cause this as got no answers.
Posted Fri, 9 Nov 2012 in Kidney Conditions
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 2 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
When a child passes urine normally his bladder empties into the urethra and no urine goes up to the ureter or kidneys and only a minimal or negligible residual urine is left in the bladder.
In case of reflux the bladder does not empty completely and dome urine is pushed up into the ureters and further to the kidneys . This can be visualized on ultrasound and the severity of the reflux and the dilatation / swelling of the ureter and kidneys can be graded ( like grade 5 in your child's case ).
Though it can be corrected by surgery the success or effectiveness of the procedure may vary from case to case depending upon the severity . So it does seem that at present there is still some ongoing reflux in your child's urinary tract which might need further evaluation by the specialist and appropriate treatment accordingly .
Hope I have answered your query.
In case you have any further doubts please feel free to ask .
If you have no further queries , kindly accept the answer to close the query.
Wishing your child good health and a speedy recovery.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Kidney ultrasound showed shadow over half kidney. What could this be? 7 minutes later
Thank you, could this of been why there was a shadow showing over his left kidney, the right one had no shadow but the left was awkward to see and the shadow was going through the middle, thank you for that information.. I hope the specialist gets back to me soon.
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 15 minutes later
Thanks for the follow up.
Yes the shadow could be due to the dilated ureter carrying the refluxed urine passing through the middle of the kidney ( connected to the kidney at the renal pelvis ).
The fact that the right kidney was normal means that the surgery was effective in stopping reflux atleast on the right side.
Though I cannot assure you without a thorough clinical history and visualization of the scan I do think it to be most probably the residual urine reflux in the left ureter and kidney as the cause of the shadow on the scan .
Hope you get a confirmation from your specialist soon.
Kindly accept my answer in case you have no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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