Ureteral Reflux Evaluation
The evaluation begins with a complete history and physical examination.
In most cases, the physical exam is normal in someone with reflux nephropathy.
Physical findings in someone with kidney failure caused by reflux nephropathy include:
- Dry skin
- Pale skin
- Muscle atrophy:
- Decrease in the size of muscles
- Leg swelling
- Foot swelling (bilateral)
- Facial swelling
- Arm swelling (bilateral)
Tests are usually required to make the diagnosis of reflux nephropathy.
Tests that may be used to evaluate reflux nephropathy include:
- Serum calcium
- Serum phosphate level
- Complete blood count
- Erythropoietin blood levels
- Kidney profile
- 24 hour urine for creatinine clearance
Additional tests that may be used to evaluate reflux nephropathy include:
- Ultrasound of the abdomen
- CT scanning of the abdomen and pelvis
- Intravenous pyelogram
- Allows a doctor to see the abnormal areas causing reflux
- Kidney biopsy
- MRI scan of the abdomen and pelvis
- Retrograde cystourethrogram
- The best test to diagnose this form of reflux
Less commonly performed tests that may be used to evaluate reflux nephropathy:
Continue to Ureteral Reflux Treatment
- Capozza N, Patricolo M, Lais A, Matarazzo E, Caione P. Endoscopic treatment of vesico-ureteral reflux: twelve years' experience. Urol Int. 2001;67(3):228-31. 
- Smellie JM, Barratt TM, Chantler C, Gordon I, Prescod NP, Ransley PG, Woolf AS. Medical versus surgical treatment in children with severe bilateral vesicoureteric reflux and bilateral nephropathy: a randomised trial. Lancet. 2001 Apr 28;357(9265):1329-33.