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Your Child & Chronic Kidney Disease - What are kidney investigations?

Page 3

What are kidney investigations cartoon

After your child has been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, he/she will be seen at regular intervals in the outpatient clinic.

Height, weight and blood pressure will be checked at the clinic. The nephrologist uses these results along with urine and blood tests to see how the kidneys are working.

A sample of urine, preferably taken first thing in the morning and brought to the clinic will be required for testing for protein. The build up of waste in the blood needs to be checked by blood tests. Naturally many children (and adults) are worried about needles, so, whenever possible a special cream or spray is used which can help numb the skin where the needle is going to be placed. The cream needs to be put on before the blood test is taken. The freezing spray can be used immediately.

Play preparation, stories and other methods can be used to prepare your child for any tests. Please ask the nursing or unit staff for advice or other information.

Occasionally your child may need to be admitted to the ward for a short stay in order to carry out more specialised tests. These may include:

    1. Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) which is an accurate measurement of the overall kidney function. This test is carried out to monitor treatment and can help us to predict when your child may require dialysis and /or kidney transplant.
    2. Renal biopsy - This is carried out if we are uncertain about the cause of the kidney failure. If a biopsy is necessary then the procedure will be fully explained to you.
    3. X-ray investigations - When your child is found to have chronic kidney disease he/she is likely to have a number of different tests performed in the x-ray department to investigate the problem. Most of these are carried out as an out patient. The most frequent one is an ultrasound examination which does not involve any needles or tubes.

Another x-ray used is to look at your child’s bones (usually hands and wrists) to see how they are growing.

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Content compiled by members of the Children’s Renal & Urology Unit, QMC Campus, Nottingham University Hospitals.

The National Kidney Federation cannot accept responsibility for information provided. The above is for guidance only. Patients are advised to seek further information from their own doctor.

NKF Controlled Document No. 166: What are kidney investigations? written: 12/06/2004 last reviewed: 14/11/2020