You may need an antegrade pyelogram if other imaging tests did not give your primary healthcare provider enough information to make a diagnosis. You may have had a retrograde pyelogram, a similar test that looks at the kidneys and ureters. Or you may have had an intravenous pyelogram. In that test, the contrast dye was injected into a vein instead of into your kidney or ureter.
The antegrade pyelogram can find a blockage in the urinary tract caused by:
The radiologist can find the blockage by looking at the X-ray images. The contrast dye will not be able to move or may be delayed through the kidney if you have a blockage.
You may also need this test to assess the kidneys or ureters before or after surgery. If you have a blockage, the surgeon may use a special tube (ureteral stent) to pass the urine around the blockage or place a kidney tube (nephrostomy catheter) to relieve the obstruction.
Your healthcare provider may have other reasons to recommend an antegrade pyelogram.
You may want to ask your healthcare provider about the amount of radiation used during the test. Also ask about the risks as they apply to you.
Consider writing down all X-rays you get, including past scans and X-rays for other health reasons. Show this list to your provider. The risks of radiation exposure may be tied to the number of X-rays you have and the X-ray treatments you have over time.
Tell your healthcare provider if you:
Possible complications of antegrade pyelogram include:
You may not be able to have this test if you have a blood clotting disorder.
You may have other risks depending on your specific health condition. Be sure to talk with your provider about any concerns you have before the procedure.
You may have an antegrade pyelogram as an outpatient or as part of your stay in a hospital. The way the test is done may vary depending on your condition and your healthcare provider's practices.
Generally, an antegrade pyelogram follows this process:
After the procedure, you will be taken to the recovery room. Medical staff will watch your blood pressure, pulse, and breathing. Once you are alert, you will be taken to your hospital room or sent home.
Your urine will be watched closely to see how much of it you are making and if you have any blood in it. Your urine may be red from even a small amount of blood. This is considered normal. You may be told to keeping looking at your urine output for a day or so once you are home.
You may have pain when you urinate. Take a pain reliever for soreness as recommended by your healthcare provider. Take only the medicines your provider tells you to. Aspirin or certain other pain medicines may raise the risk of bleeding.
Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these happen:
Your healthcare provider may give you other instructions, depending on your situation.