Renal Angiography:


A renal angiography is an X-ray study of blood vessels to the kidney. X-rays are taken while contrast dye is injected into a catheter (a tiny tube) placed into the blood vessels of the kidneys to detect any signs of blockage, narrowing, or other abnormalities affecting the blood supply to the kidneys. If a narrowing is found, the patient may be a candidate for angioplasty (repair of the artery using a balloon followed by deployment of stent).

Who gets a renal angiogram?

Blockages of the renal arteries can cause high blood pressure and abnormal kidney function. Renal angiography is often performed for patients with high blood pressure at a very young age and for patients who are on 3 or more blood pressure medications or have intolerable side effects of  medications.

Patients with impaired kidney function that is thought to be caused by a blockage of the arteries supplying blood to the kidneys are also candidates for renal angiography. Many patients with narrowed renal arteries are candidates for angioplasty at the same time.

Blocked left renal artery

The test should NOT be done if someone is  pregnant or tends to bleed.

Magnetic resonance angiography can be done on those who cannot have a renal arteriography exam. MRA is noninvasive, and can provide similar imaging of the kidney arteries.

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