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Urinary and Genital Disorders (Children)

Does my daughter really need a VCUG? Thanks!



Almost 3 years ago when my daughter was 2 and half years old, she was diagnosed as bladder infection in Canada. Unfortunately, we were travelling in China when we were informed of the test results. I took her to a hospital in China and they gave her a quick urine test and I was told no significant issue and the doctor gave me some potassium permanganate to wash her front. (I was so ignorant then and I didn’t know we should give her urine culture test – I do feel sorry about it for my daughter).

After 3 years, recently she felt very itchy and red in her front so she had a urine culture test (in Canada). The test was okay and the pediatrician suggests wash her front using baking soda.(But when she had the test, she has been having antibiotics for 1 week because of throat infection/asthma, which could affect the test result.) When this happened my daughter had no fever, no pain when pee. She is back normal after I washed her front a few times.

The next time we saw the pediatrician, she got my daughter’s first UTI test (3 years ago) and she wants to do an ultrasound and VCUG for my daughter. At the same time she said it shouldn’t be problem because my daughter didn’t have UTI in the past 3 years.

My question is: Can I only give my daughter ultrasound, not VCUG? She is such a soft, timid girl and I am trying to avoid her suffer. If there was reflux, wouldn’t she have more UTI in the past 3 years? I also doubt the first UTI test (when she was 2 and half) was not accurate because I remember I just got the urine normally, not the middle part of the urine.

Thank you so much for answering my question.


I would likely only do an ultrasound; a VCUG would be appropriate if she had a documented UTI with fever, suggestive of an upper urinary tract (i.e., kidney) infection.

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Response by:

Jack S Elder, MD, FACS, FAAP Jack S Elder, MD, FACS, FAAP
Clinical Professor of Urology
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University