RARE-MR-urography in the diagnosis of upper urinary tract abnormalities in children
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RARE-MR-urography (RapidAcquisition withRelaxationEnhancement) is a fast MR imaging technique (6.4 s/acquisition) that selectively depicts fluid by heavy T2-weighting. From 9/1989 to 11/1990, RARE-MR urograms were prospectively evaluated in the diagnosis of upper urinary tract abnormalities in 55 children. The method is performed in several planes and combined with a coronal, T1-weighted spin-echo sequence. Forty out of 42 kidneys with dilated renal pelvis, and 21 out of 24 dilated ureters were identified, only the mildly dilated ones were missed. Even in non-functioning kidneys the urinary tract was clearly depicted by RARE-MR-urography. However, no differentiation could be made with this technique between vesicoureteral reflux and non-refluxing dilatation of ureter and/or renal pelvis. All 19 pelviureteric obstructions and all eight renal duplications with a dilated segment were identified. RARE-MR-urography is a new tool for diagnosing urinary tract abnormalities in children without having to employ ionizing radiation, contrast media, or general anesthesia. A dilated urinary tract can be shown in one image displaying the entire urinary system, similar to excretory urography. The technique is presently not able to provide the information of voiding cystourethrography or renal scintigraphy, nor is it as easy to perform as ultrasound. However, in certain cases it may replace excretory urography.
KeywordsUrinary Tract Contrast Medium Renal Pelvis Urinary System Vesicoureteral Reflux
magnetic resonance imaging
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