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Acta Paediatr. 2010 Dec;99(12):1875-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2010.01909.x.

Occurrence of vesicoureteral reflux in children.

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Department of Paediatrics, University Hospital, Oulu, Finland.



The reported low occurrence of vesicoureteral reflux in the general population seems implausible. We wanted to test the hypothesis that reflux is more common and more independent of urinary-tract infection than has previously been thought.


  We tested our hypothesis by analysing the characteristics of 406 consecutive children aged <5years who had been referred for consultation because of urinary-tract infection. Using data on their urine samples, we evaluated the reliability of the urinary-tract infection diagnosis and analysed the frequencies of vesicoureteral reflux and abnormal ultrasound findings in three reliability groups (A: certain urinary-tract infection, B: possible and C: improbable).


 The occurrence of reflux was the same irrespective of the diagnostic reliability of urinary-tract infection (A: 98/276 [36%] versus B: 13/46 [28%] versus C: 9/25 [36%]). Most of the abnormal ultrasound findings (58/71, 80%) were found among patients with a certain diagnosis (Group A).


We suggest that vesicoureteral reflux is more common in children even without urinary-tract infection than has been thought previously. The guidelines recommending a search for reflux by means of voiding cystourethrography should be reconsidered.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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