Hydronephrosis

Hydronephrosis in children occurs when there is a dilation or stretching of the kidney pelvis, which is where urine collects, or ureter, the tube that drains urine from the kidney. Hydronephrosis in children may involve one or both kidneys and can be mild, moderate, or severe, but rest assured that Nemours pediatric urologists specialize in treating both simple and complex cases of hydronephrosis and keep your child's comfort their top priority.

 
Learn More About Hydronephrosis in Children

Hydronephrosis in children may occur when there is a blockage to the flow of urine causing increased pressure "up stream". This can lead to  urine building up above the point of blockage and cause the characteristic stretching and dilation of the urinary tract.

Hydronephrosis in children can also occur due to an abnormal connection between the ureter and bladder that allows urine to flow backward toward the kidney when the bladder contracts to empty. This condition is known as reflux.

Occasionally pediatric hydronephrosis can also be caused by a blockage that has cleared and left the urinary system stretched but not under any pressure.

How is Hydronephrosis in Children Diagnosed?

Medical advances in prenatal ultrasound examinations have helped identify large numbers of infants with urinary dilation or stretching prior to birth. In diagnosing hydronephrosis, Nemours urologists may recommend a voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) and a renal (kidney) scan.

The VCUG tells us if the “one-way” valve in the bladder is functioning, while the renal scan reveals how well the kidneys are functioning and assesses how fast the urine drains from the kidney into the bladder to see if a blockage exists. These studies help determine if surgical repair or immediate treatment is needed since hydronephrosis can lead to urinary tract infections (UTIs) and sometimes permanent kidney damage.

Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, Wilmington


1600 Rockland Road
Wilmington, DE 19803
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For Appointments: (302) 651-4200

 
What to Bring
  • photo ID
  • medical and pharmacy insurance cards
  • preferred pharmacy name and phone number
  • names and dosage of all medications, including over-the-counter medication, your child is currently taking
  • guardianship and custody papers, if a legal guardian rather than a parent accompanies your child
New Patients

Bring these forms for your first appointment:

Returning Patients
 
Forms & Resources
New Patient Forms
Returning Patient Forms
Resources for Patients & Families

U.S. News & World Report Best Children’s Hospitals: Urology

Our expertise in treating and diagnosing hydronephorsis in children draws patient-families from around the country and world to Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., for our pediatric urology care.

We know how difficult it can be to deal with hydronephrosis in children, especially if surgery is needed. We do our best to clearly explain treatment options, to answer your questions and address all of your concerns. Some of our pediatric urologists are fluent in other languages, including Spanish and Arabic languages.

Specialized Care for Hydronephrosis in Children

Nemours urologists are board certified and fellowship trained in pediatric urology. This means that they have the expertise to diagnose and treat hydronephrosis in infants, children and adolescents. See what we have to offer to help care for your child’s urological condition at duPont Hospital for Children.

Help Before Your Baby is Born

Through Nemours Partners for Perinatal Management our urologists work with expectant parents and their doctors to help evaluate congenital (present at birth) urological conditions such as hydronephrosis and develop a plan of care for before and after your baby is born.
Get to Our Partners for Perinatal Management »

Expertise in Pediatric Urologic Surgery

Nemours pediatric urologists have been selected as some of the "Best Doctors in America®." As board-certified specialists, our surgeons are able to provide the latest treatments and techniques, including laparoscopic and minimally invasive procedures that help promote faster healing and return to normal activities.

Offering the Region’s Most Advanced Robotic-Assisted Technology

As the first children’s hospital in the Philadelphia and Delaware area to offer the most advanced version of the da Vinci® robotic-assisted surgical system, our surgeons use this latest generation technology to perform very precise, less invasive surgical procedures. Our da Vinci® Si™ robotic-assisted technology provides 3-D imagery and views at 15-times magnification. This makes a number of advantages possible for our patients, include smaller incisions and scars, faster healing time, and less pain.

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Nemours Urologists in the Community

Our pediatric urologists provide consultations and treatment for newborns and children at: