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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 60-62

Postnatal outcome of fetal hydronephrosis: Implications for prenatal counselling

1 Department of Pediatric Urology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, India
2 Department of Radiology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
Ramesh Babu
3/5 Jai Nagar 7th St. Arumbakkam, Chennai
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0970-1591.60446

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Objectives : Hydronephrosis is commonly detected during antenatal scans. There are multiple conflicting prognostic factors in the literature with no clear focus on the postnatal outcome. The aim of the study is to assess the outcome of fetal hydronephrosis, based on antenatal sonography. Materials and Methods : Based on the third trimester fetal ultrasound findings, patients were divided into group I (unilateral hydronephrosis) and group II (bilateral hydronephrosis, ureteric dilatation, bladder thickening, etc). Postnatal evaluation and follow-up was performed by a single physician with uniform protocol. The outcomes, spontaneous resolution vs. surgical intervention, were compared between groups. Among group I, further analysis of outcome was done based on 32-week fetal pelvic antero posterior diameter (APD). Results : Among a total of 116 patients in the study group; group I had 78 patients, 7 (9%) required surgery; group II had 38 patients, 21(55%) required surgery. The difference in outcome between the groups was statistically significant (P = 0.002). Among those with unilateral hydronephrosis, none (0/55) with APD <15 mm required surgery, while all patients (4/4) with fetal APD >30 mm required surgery. In those with APD between 15-30 mm, 3/19 required surgery and prolonged follow-up was required to arrive at the decision. The difference in outcome between the subgroups was statistically significant (P < 0.001, Chi-square test). Conclusions : The results of our study show that simple unilateral fetal hydronephrosis runs a benign course. In the presence hydronephrosis larger than 15 mm, bilateral disease, or bladder distension, detailed postnatal evaluation and regular follow-up is warranted to plan a timely intervention. The above data could be used in prenatal counselling of these parents. Further larger studies are warranted to through more evidence.

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