Some of the diagnostic tests are:
- Urine analysis
It helps in analyzing the acid content and protein content in the urine and helps to diagnose kidney problems. By using a dipstick test, in which Dipstick is a thin plastic stick with chemicals on it that is dipped in urine. The trips on the stick change color if a substance is present in urine that is above normal.
This test is used to determine the amount of acid in the urine and if the acid level (pH) is above normal, it could be an indication for kidney stones, urinary infections, kidney disorders, and other disorders.
It is also testing the presence or absence of protein in the urine. Ideally, proteins should only be in the blood. But, if there is kidney damage and the filtration process in the kidneys is not functioning properly, then proteins leak into the urine.
Having sugar in the urine is a sign of diabetes. Having blood in urine could be signs of infection or kidney problems.
- Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR)
It is the test to measure the function of the kidneys and determine the stage of kidney disease. If the GFR number is low it means that the kidneys are not functioning properly. But, the calculation of the GFR number depends on the amount of creatinine (the waste that comes from the muscles) in the blood, the age, and the gender of the patient. The GFR number is calculated based on a mathematical formula.
A normal GFR number is 90 in adults and if the GFR number is less than 60 it depicts severe kidney damage or kidney failure if the GFR number is lower
- Ultrasound scanning
It is ideally suited for imaging the kidneys and the urinary bladder by the use of sound waves. It helps in evaluating renal failure, nephrolithiasis (formation of a kidney stone in the kidney), hematuria (blood in urine), recurrent infections and pain.
- MR angiography
Renal magnetic resonance angiography allows accurate evaluation of patients suspected of having renal artery stenosis (narrowing of arteries that carry blood to one or both of the kidneys), assessing renal bypass grafts and other renal functions and excretions.
- Imaging studies of the kidney
Other imaging techniques like CT scan use contrast agents or dyes that may be risky to a person already having kidney failure and a doctor has to be consulted before taking a CT scan. A CT scan of the kidney may be performed to assess the kidneys for tumors and other lesions, obstructions such as kidney stones, abscesses, polycystic kidney disease, and congenital anomalies
MRI scans help in diagnosing acute kidney injury, chronic kidney disease, detection of renal cysts, abscesses and neoplasms e.g. simple cysts, polycystic kidneys.
- Renal biopsy
A kidney biopsy is a procedure that involves taking a small piece of kidney tissue for examination with a microscope. It is done to evaluate hematuria (blood in urine), albuminuria (more than normal amount of albumin protein in urine) and changes in the function of kidneys. It also used to diagnose if a person is having kidney cancer.
- Intravenous urography (IVU)
It is a radiography study of the renal tissues, pelvic region, ureters, and the urinary bladder. It is done to check for the normal function of the kidneys, check for any congenital anomalies, detect and localize a ureteric obstruction (urolithiasis) or any kind of cancers.
Renal scintigraphy uses small amounts of radioactive materials called radiopharmaceuticals, a special camera, and a computer to evaluate the kidneys’ function and anatomy and determine whether they are working properly.
- Renal Arteriography
It is a special x-ray of the blood vessels of the kidneys. It helps in diagnosing any blood clots, blockages, abnormal structures, spasms in the vessels, tumors, high blood pressure in the vessels and widened blood vessels of the kidneys.
With all these tests and examinations, a doctor can correctly diagnose and plan treatment for the patient. At Continental Hospitals, the diagnosis is made by our doctors at the center for Nephrology, making it the best nephrology hospital