A kidney, ureter, and bladder (KUB) X-ray is a diagnostic test that is used for detecting kidney stones and diagnosing multiple disorders of the urinary tract. This diagnostic examination is usually done by injecting contrast media in your veins.
A KUB X-ray evaluates the urinary tract before other procedures are performed. Basic information regarding the kidney size and shape and position of the ureters and bladder is obtained with a KUB X-ray. The presence of calcification in the kidneys or ureters may point to stones in the urinary system.
The doctor may also recommend a KUB X-ray to assess how quickly and efficiently the patient's system is able to handle the urinary waste. This exam can enable the radiologist to detect problems within the urinary tract resulting from an enlarged prostate or even a tumor in the kidney, ureter, or urinary bladder.
The test is usually done on an outpatient basis, and the process is outlined below:
- The patient is positioned on the table, and still X-ray images are taken. A contrast material is then injected, usually in a vein in the patient's arm, followed by additional still images.
- The patient may need to stay very still and may be asked to keep from breathing for a few seconds while the X-ray is taken to reduce the possibility of a blurred image.
- Because the contrast material is processed by the kidneys, a series of images are taken to determine the actual size of the kidneys and to capture the urinary tract in action as it begins to empty.
- The technologist may apply a compression band around the body to better visualize the urinary structures leading from the kidney.
- X-rays use invisible electromagnetic energy beams used to produce images of the internal tissues, bones, and organs on a film. External radiation produces images of the body, organs, and other internal structures for diagnostic purposes. X-rays pass through the body tissues onto specially-treated plates (similar to a camera film), and a “negative” picture is produced (the more solid a structure is, the whiter it appears on the film).
- When the examination is complete, the patient will be asked to wait until the radiologist determines that all the necessary images have been obtained.
- This study is usually completed within an hour. However, because some kidneys empty at a slower rate, the exam may last up to 4 hours.
While the X-ray procedure itself causes no pain, the manipulation of the body part being examined may cause some discomfort or pain, particularly in the case of a recent injury or an invasive procedure, such as a surgery. The technician will use all possible comfort measures and complete the procedure as quickly as possible to minimize any discomfort or pain.
Generally, you can resume your daily activities as soon as you have finished the scans. However, your doctor may give you additional or alternate instructions after the procedure, depending on your particular situation.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top What Is a Kidney Ureter Bladder XRay Study Related Articles
Cysview (hexaminolevulinate hydrochloride)Cysview (hexaminolevulinate hydrochloride) is an imaging drug used in the cystoscopic detection of non-muscle invasive papillary cancer of the bladder among patients suspected or known to have lesion(s) on the basis of a prior cystoscopy. Common side effects of Cysview include bladder spasm, pain during urination, difficulty urinating, blood in the urine, inability to empty the bladder, bladder pain, or headache.
What Is the Difference Between Fluoroscopy and Radiography?Radiography or X-ray and fluoroscopy procedures seem similar. However, fluoroscopy obtains moving images of the inner part of the body and radiography uses gamma rays to develop a static image of the internal structure of a body.
Gemtesa (vibegron)Gemtesa (vibegron) is a prescription medicine for adults used to treat the symptoms of a condition called overactive bladder. Gemtesa may cause serious side effects, including the inability to empty your bladder (urinary retention). Common side effects of Gemtesa include urinary tract infection, nasal congestion, sore throat or runny nose, nausea, headache, upper respiratory tract infection, and diarrhea.
Hemodialysis (Treatment for Kidney Failure)The most common method used to treat advanced and permanent kidney failure is hemodialysis. Hemodialysis allows your blood to flow through a special filter that removes extra fluids and waste products. Most patients have treatments three times a week. Tests to measure treatment success are performed about once a month. Anemia, erythropoietin, renal osteodystrophy, itching, sleep disorders, and amyloidosis are all complications from dialysis. A proper diet can help improve dialysis and daily health.
How Long Do Kidney Transplants Last?The duration for which a transplanted kidney lasts may vary from person to person. On average, kidney transplants may last for around 10-12 years.
How Long Does it Take to Pass a Kidney Stone?What are kidney stones and what do they feel like? Learn the signs of kidney stones and what to do if you have kidney stone pain.
Hypertensive Kidney DiseaseHigh blood pressure can damage the kidneys and is one of the leading causes of kidney failure (end-stage renal kidney disease). Kidney damage, like hypertension, can be unnoticeable and detected only through medical tests. If you have kidney disease, you should control your blood pressure. Other treatment options include prescription medications.
Kidney Disease QuizKidney disease is common. Take this kidney disease quiz to test your knowledge and learn the symptoms, causes and types of kidney disease and what foods to eat and avoid!
Kidney (Renal) Failure
Kidney failure can occur from an acute event or a chronic condition or disease. Prerenal kidney failure is caused by blood loss, dehydration, or medication. Some of the renal causes of kidney failure include sepsis, medications, rhabdomyolysis, multiple myeloma, and acute glomerulonephritis.
Post renal causes of kidney failure include bladder obstruction, prostate problems, tumors, or kidney stones.Treatment options included diet, medications, or dialysis.
Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)Kidney infection (pyelonephritis) usually is caused by E. coli and other bacteria that have spread from the bladder from a UTI (urinary tract infection), poor hygiene, sexual intercourse, pregnancy, catheter, cystoscope exam, surgery, kidney stones, or prostate enlargement. Symptoms of kidney infection include back pain, frequent urination, pain during urination, fever, and or pus or blood in the urine. Kidney infection can be cured with antibiotic treatment. Cranberry juice may prevent UTIs, but that hasn’t been proven in all research studies.
Kidney Stone SlideshowWhat causes kidney stones? Learn to recognize the symptoms and signs of kidney stone pain. Explore kidney stone treatment and how to prevent kidney stones.
The First Signs of Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)
Kidney stones are solid masses of crystalline material that form in the kidneys. Symptoms of kidney stones can include pain, nausea, vomiting, and even fever and chills. Kidney stones are diagnosed via CT scans and specialized X-rays. Treatment of kidney stones involves drinking lots of fluids and taking over-the-counter pain medications to medical intervention including prescription medications, lithotripsy, and sometimes even surgery.
Kidneys PictureThe kidneys are a pair of organs located in the back of the abdomen. See a picture of the Kidneys and learn more about the health topic.
Valstar (valrubicin)Valstar (valrubicin) is a cancer (antineoplastic) medication used to treat bladder cancer. Common side effects of Valstar include bladder irritation (symptoms such as pain, spasm, frequent urge to urinate, and blood in the urine), urinary incontinence, urinary tract infection, and nausea.
Ways to Keep Your Kidneys HealthyYou might know that more than a drink or two a day is bad for your health. But in some cases, any alcohol at all may not be a great idea.