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Childhood Nephrotic Syndrome - What is a kidney biopsy?

Page 11

Biopsy cartoon

This is a procedure which is carried out with the child sedated (medicine will be given through a cannula to make your child sleepy). Occasionally in young children a general anaesthetic is required. The child lies flat on his/her stomach and we use an ultrasound scan to find out exactly where the kidneys are and where to insert the needle. The procedure is more uncomfortable than painful and only a very small sample of one kidney is removed using a special needle. The sample is then examined under the microscope and it may take several days before the answer is available.

After the biopsy the child may rest for a while but then can be up and about quite quickly. Your child may be able to go home after the biopsy the same day.

The biopsy should have no long term effect on the kidney. We generally restrict heavy exercise for one week after the hospital admission but your child can safely return to school.

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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. 139: What is a kidney biopsy? written: 10/09/2004 last reviewed: 14/11/2020