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J Urol. 1999 Jul;162(1):31-4.

Helical computerized tomography arteriography for evaluation of live renal donors undergoing laparoscopic nephrectomy.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore 21201, USA.



Traditionally, live renal donors are evaluated with excretory urography and renal arteriography. Helical computerized tomography (CT) arteriography offers a less invasive alternative for demonstrating necessary anatomical information before laparoscopic allograft harvest. We evaluate the accuracy of helical CT arteriography in depicting renal vascular anatomy with an emphasis on the detection of arterial and venous anomalies.


Imaging studies were done on 175 patients according to a standard CT arteriography protocol with early arterial phase scanning (14 to 20-second delay), and 1 mm. axial and 3-dimensional maximum intensity projection reconstructions. Renal vascular anatomy was mapped with attention to aberrant arterial and venous anatomy. Intraoperative findings were correlated at laparoscopic donor nephrectomy.


There was overall agreement between CT arteriography and laparoscopic findings in 163 cases (93%). Supernumerary renal arteries were identified in 40 cases (23%). Sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of CT arteriography for arterial anatomy were 91, 98 and 96%, respectively. Cases with less than 2 mm. accessory arteries or early branching single vessels simulating dual arteries were misdiagnosed. Venous anomalies occurred in 11 patients (6.3%). Sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of CT arteriography for venous anatomy were 65, 100, and 97%, respectively. Misdiagnoses included early venous bifurcations and supernumerary tributary veins, which were poorly opacified.


Helical CT is highly accurate and specific for the demonstration of renal arterial anatomy. Poor opacification resulted in a lower sensitivity for venous anatomy. Overall, helical CT provides essential anatomical information, and is an alternative to standard urography and arteriography.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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