Nuclear Medicine: Genitourinary Scans

The kidneys are a part of the genitourinary system and are paired organs whose primary function is the production of urine, which is done by filtering the blood as it circulates. After urine is made, it is collected in the renal pelvis, released into the ureters, and passed into the bladder. These organs together make up the genitourinary system.  

Nuclear Medicine imaging of the kidneys uses radioactive drugs to assess how well the kidneys are working. This is done in five ways:

  • Comparing the right kidney to the left kidney
  • Monitoring blood flow to the kidneys
  • Evaluating any blockages to urine flow
  • Analyzing kidney scarring
  • Identifying any backflow (reflux) of urine from the bladder

There are four different Nuclear Medicine studies that are done within the genitourinary system and include:

  • Renal Flow/Function
  • Renal SPECT with DMSA
  • Voiding Cystography
  • Peritoneal Dialysis Leak