Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP) Test

Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP) Test

Having an Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)

Your child has been scheduled for an Intravenous Pyelogram. Please arrive 20 minutes before your scheduled exam. This will allow time for you to register your child for the exam.

Please bring:

  • Your child's insurance card
  • A list of any medicines (prescription and over the counter) that your child is currently taking
  • Your child's immunization record
  • Your child's Express ID Card, if you have one

What is an Intravenous Pyelogram test?

An Intravenous Pyelogram or IVP is a series of pictures taken to examine the urinary system (kidneys, ureters and bladder). The urinary system is responsible for getting rid of waste (urine) and excess water from the body. A colorless liquid (X-ray dye) will need to be injected into your child’s body to help these body parts show up on the X-ray picture.

Getting Ready for the Test

Please follow the instructions listed under IVP Patient Prep. It is very important that the instructions are followed closely.

When you arrive at the Radiology Department, one of the radiographers (the person who will be taking your child's X-ray) will explain how the exam will be done.

Some questions will be asked about allergies (if any). This is important before any medicines or X-ray dyes are given to your child. Your child will then be taken into a room where there will be a large X-ray camera over a special table. Your child may be asked to change into a gown. This is to keep buttons and zippers from showing up on your child's X-ray picture.

IVP Patient Prep

No prep for painful stones or hematuria (blood or blood cells in urine).

Prep if patient is not having pain
All ages

  • Nothing by mouth 2 hours before exam

During the Test

The radiographer (the person who will be taking your child's X-ray) will weigh your child. Then the radiographer will help your child lie on the table and will ask your child to be very still for the pictures. The camera will be moved over your child's body. It will not hurt or touch your child. The radiographer will then go to another part of the room to take your child's picture. Your child will hear a buzz when the picture is taken.

After the picture is taken an IV will be started. An IV is a small plastic tube inserted with a needle in your child's hand or arm. It is very important that your child hold very still while the IV is started. Your support as a parent is important.

The X-ray dye (a colorless liquid) will be injected into your child's IV and more pictures will be taken. Sometimes, the dye will leave a metallic taste in the mouth or a feeling of warmth throughout your child's body. As pictures are being taken your child may be asked to lie in different positions. Once done, your child's X-ray pictures will be shown to the radiologist (the X-ray doctor). The radiologist will decide if more pictures need to be taken. After the exam is complete, the nurse will remove your child's IV.

The exam will take 30 minutes to an hour to complete. In some cases it may take a little longer.

After the Test

There's a short wait while the X-rays are reviewed. When everything is finished, your child will be released. The radiologist will then tell your child's doctor the results of the test.

Note: Please make sure your child drinks plenty of fluids for the next two (2) days.

Special Note: If your child is taking oral medication for diabetes they will need a special prep. Please call the Radiology Department for instructions.

Commonly Asked Questions about the IVP Test

How long will the exam take?
The exam will generally take 30 minutes to an hour. In some cases, it may take longer.

When will I know the results of the exam?
The radiologist will let your doctor know the results of your child's exam. Your doctor will then discuss the results of the exam with you.

Could my child have a reaction from the dye used in the exam?
Contrast reactions in children are rare. However, any child could experience one. Children at higher risk are those with:

  • Asthma
  • Sensitivity to medicines or an allergen (anything that can cause an allergic reaction)
  • Heart failure and those less than 12 months of age

Possible reactions are feeling warm, nausea, vomiting, hives, congestion, trouble breathing, sometimes apnea (stop breathing), chest pain, and as with many given medicines there is a possibility of a severe reaction, which could result in death.

If you have any questions about your test, please ask your radiographer or doctor.