Renogram (kidney function) scan

What is a Renogram scan?

A renogram scan is an examination of the kidneys, ureters and bladder using a radioactive tracer. It shows the blood supply and measures how the kidneys’ function. The kidneys filter the tracer which passes out through your bladder (or stoma if you have one); this process is scanned (detected) using a Gamma Camera. The scan also gives information on the size, shape and position of the kidneys.

What is this scan used for?

A renogram scan is used to find out how well each kidney is working (the kidney function). It also shows how well urine is leaving, or draining from the kidneys. This may help to determine whether there is a blockage that affects the flow of urine from the kidneys.

How can I prepare for this procedure?

  • Please eat normally and drink about one litre (6 cups) of any fluid over the two hours before your appointment. You do not need a full bladder for this procedure.
  • You will not need to undress as long as there are no metal items on your clothing.
  • If you have a urostomy please bring a night bag.
  • If there is any chance you could be pregnant, or if you are breastfeeding, please inform the Department at least 24 hours before your appointment on 0161 495 7040.

What happens during the procedure?

  • The radioactive tracer is given through an intravenous injection. You should not feel any side effects from the tracer. A diuretic (a drug which increases urine production) might be given.
  • You will be lying down for your scan, but you will not be totally enclosed.
  • The scan will begin as soon as the tracer is given and may last up to 40 minutes. If you need to empty your bladder during the scan please ask the radiographer or technologist.

Paying for your procedure

The costs of a Renogram scan are covered by most medical insurance policies, but please check with your insurer first. If you are paying for your own scan, please ask for the cost of the procedure to be explained when you book the appointment.

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