Hydronephrosis refers to an enlargement of the kidney as a result of too much fluid accumulating within the kidneys.
It is often seen in an ultrasound of an unborn child when a blockage in the urinary tract causes urine to backup from the bladder into the kidney. Marshfield Clinic Urologists are experts in treating this condition.
A physician will perform an ultrasound a few days after birth to determine if the condition has persisted. Course of treatment is as follows:
In order to rule out reflux (urine moving from the bladder to the kidney), a physician may consider inserting a catheter into the bladder and filling it with liquid to see if there is backflow.
If so, the child may be given antibiotics and regular check-ups to confirm the condition is improving.
Many blockages that lead to hydronephrosis require a surgical procedure that can be done to remove the blocked portion of the urinary tract and reconnect it near the kidney to the bladder.
In severe cases, a child's kidney may be found to be multicystic (having cysts of irregular size) or non-functioning. In this case, if the second kidney is fully functional, the physician may choose to remove the damaged kidney.