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Following tests are there which help to diagnose kidney stones, see where they are located, and find out if they are causing or may cause damage to the urinary tract.
  • A noncontrast spiral computed tomography (CT) scan is the preferred test for kidney stones. It is a special type of CT scan that moves in a circle.
  • An intravenous pyelogram (IVP) is an X-ray test that can show the size, shape, and position of the urinary tract, including the kidneys and ureters. See an IVP of a kidney stone.
  • A retrograde pyelogram may be done if the IVP or CT scan does not provide a diagnosis.
  • Laboratory investigations typically carried out include:[28][30][34][37].
  • microscopic examination of the urine, which may show red blood cells, bacteria, leukocytes, urinary casts and crystals.
  • urine culture to identify any infecting organisms present in the urinary tract and sensitivity to determine the susceptibility of these organisms to specific antibiotics.
  • complete blood count, looking for neutrophilia (increased neutrophil granulocyte count) suggestive of bacterial infection, as seen in the setting of struvite stones.
  • renal function tests to look for abnormally high blood calcium blood levels (hypercalcemia).
  • 24 hour urine collection to measure total daily urinary volume, magnesium, sodium, uric acid, calcium, citrate, oxalate and phosphate.
  • An abdominal X-ray (KUB) gives a picture of the kidneys, the bladder, and the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder (ureters).
  • An ultrasound exam of the kidneys (ultrasonogram) is the preferred test for pregnant women.
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