Renal Artery Doppler Ultrasound is a non-invasive test that uses ultrasound to create an image of the blood flow to the kidney. It helps the physicians detect renal artery stenosis (narrowing or stiffening of renal arteries) and other risks.
The test utilizes high-frequency sound waves to capture images. A transducer device will be placed on the abdomen after applying a water-based gel, through which the ultrasound travels into the body. The sound waves are reflected off the blood vessels, organs, and tissues to render images in the computer.
The renal artery is the main blood vessel that carries oxygenated blood to your kidneys. The ultrasound test helps to assess the main artery's dysfunctions and structural abnormalities. Patients with hypertension can also cause the narrowing of the blood vessels.
Your physician may suggest you for Renal Artery Doppler Ultrasound test if you have:
Acute renal failure
Abdominal bruit (abnormal sound)
Renal artery disease
It occurs in patients over 55 years with atherosclerosis (hardening of arteries). The test is also performed to assess the kidney's anatomy and the root of kidney disease. This will help the physician to decide the necessary treatment.
Renal Artery Doppler Ultrasound does not have any risks. The high-frequency sound waves are harmless, and the gel applied for the test is water-soluble. You may feel slight discomfort when the physician presses the transducer over the examination area, but it is only temporary.
Your physicians will give you the directions before the Renal Artery Doppler Ultrasound. Some of the typical directions given include:
Do not eat food or drink for 6 hours before the test
You can take your medication with a small amount of water under the physician's order (diabetic patients must inform the physician beforehand)
Do not smoke or chew gum before the exam
Wear comfortable loose clothes. Avoid dresses
Avoid any jewelry
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