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Urinary and Genital Disorders (Children)

Kidney tube dilation in foetus

11/06/2006

Question:

Dear Doctor,

I am 28 weeks pregnant. After my last ultrasound scan (about 3-4 weeks ago), I was informed that a dilation of the tube from the kidney had been observed in my foetus.

Firtsly, I would request you to kindly clarify the condition itself - teh causes, etc.

Also, kindly clarify on the following points: 1) Is this a cause of concern for the unborn? 2) Can the condition be treated now - while teh child is still unborn? If yes, what are the treatment options? 3) What are the treatment options for the child after birth?

Would highly apprecaite if you could respond in detail to my queries.

Thanks.

Answer:

It is very common these days for fluid to be detected in the kidney or kidneys of a child, even before birth. The majority of these kids do not have any major abnormality, but a small number do have problems that can be corrected prior to a child getting sick or there being kidney injury.

There is little to be done during the pregnancy other than monitoring the child's kidneys with serial ultrasounds. As long as only one kidney is involved or the amount of amniotic fluid around the baby is normal, nothing needs to be done.

Most importantly, once the child is born, he or she will need x-ray studies to evaluate the function of the kidneys and bladder. Sometimes these dilations can be due to blockages or due to urine going back up the wrong way. Most of the time, however, the child does not have any major problems with the kidneys.

For more information:

Go to the Urinary and Genital Disorders (Children) health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Rama   Jayanthi, MD Rama Jayanthi, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor of Urology
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University