Objective: to evaluate Doppler visualization of ureteric jets in the assessment of unilateral kidney collecting system dilatation in children and adolescents. Methods and patients: color Doppler ultrasonography was performed in 27 patients with hydronephrosis (11 female, 16 male, age range 3-21 years, mean age 10.5 ± 4.4). Nine had acute obstruction due to ureteral calculus, seven had obstructive hydronephrosis due to uretero-pelvic junction (UPJ) stenosis, and 11 had non-obstructive hydronephrosis. Doppler was also performed in 32 healthy children (15 boys and 17 girls, age 2-17 years, mean age 7.8 ± 3.9), who represented the control group. Results: in the control group jets were visible in 57 out of 64 ureteric units (89%). The mean frequency of jets in healthy children was 4.1 jets per min. In all children with hydronephrosis, jets were visible in 25 out of 27 normal ureteric units (92.6%), and their mean frequency was 4.5 jets per min. In children with acute unilateral colic, ureteric jets were completely absent in eight of nine patients (89%). In children with obstructive hydronephrosis, due to UPJ stenosis, jets were absent in five out of seven patients (71.4%), and in children with non-obstructive hydronephrosis jets were absent in three out of eleven patients (27.3%). When jets are visible, their frequencies are much lower on the obstructed side as compared with normal side, while in cases of nonobstructive dilatation frequency of jets is similar on both sides. Conclusion: absence of jets in patients with acute obstruction due to ureteral calculus, strongly correlates with high-grade obstruction. In children with UPJ stenosis, presence of ureteric jet does not exclude significant obstruction, but the frequency of jets on the obstructed side is much lower as compared with the unaffected side. When there is absence of jet from the dilated side or significant asymmetry in jet frequency, hydronephrosis is likely to be obstructive.
- Doppler ureteric jets