Preparation, Procedure and Side Effects of Intravenous Pyelogram Test

Submitted on March 27, 2012

The kidneys are a pair of organs that perform the function of waste removal from the body. Solid wastes are removed through the digestive system. However, there are plenty of other wastes produced by the various processes in the body. These wastes pass into the kidneys where filtration takes place. The filtered 'clean' blood continues to flow through the body. The waste materials pass through the ureters into the urinary bladder. Here, fluid collects until there is enough to prompt evacuation. The process of urination rids the body of this liquid waste.

What Is a Intravenous Pyelogram?

The intravenous pyelogram or IVP is an imaging procedure that uses a contrast material. As mentioned above, the kidneys filter out waste products from the blood. During the intravenous pyelogram, a contrast material will be injected into a vein in the body. This contrast material passes through the kidneys where it is filtered out. The individual is made to undergo a series of X-ray scans. When this happens, the structures within the kidneys, ureters and urinary bladder become clearly visible. The contrast fluid passing through the kidneys will be used to analyze how well the kidneys are functioning. If there is a significant amount of contrast left behind in the blood, the kidneys may be considered to be functioning poorly.

Preparation and Procedure

The intravenous pyelogram preparation involves fasting from the night before the procedure. This is done to ensure that there is no other waste in the blood. Some patients may be generally allergic. These individuals will be tested for allergies to the type of contrast being planned for use. If the patient clears the test, he or she is allowed to undergo the intravenous pyelogram procedure. Apart from fasting, there is no intravenous pyelogram preparation needed from the patient point of view. After the intravenous pyelogram, the patient can resume normal activity. If there is some serious problem noted in the intravenous pyelogram test, the patient may be admitted to hospital for further tests and treatment. However, if the test is normal or fairly normal, the patient will be allowed to leave.

Risks and Side Effects

There are a few intravenous pyelogram risks that could affect the individual. One of the most common intravenous pyelogram side effects is associated with the allergic reaction of the patient. Apart from this, there should be no major intravenous pyelogram complication associated with the intravenous pyelogram procedure. Patients who show minimal kidney function may be given emergency dialysis immediately after the procedure because of the possible toxic effects of the contrast material and the wastes produced in the body.