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The specialized urologists at Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital evaluate patients with symptoms of urinary tract obstruction to identify the cause and provide the least invasive solution to the problem. After taking into account the factors regarding your age, overall health, and your preferences, the most viable treatment option is suggested.
Urinary obstruction, also called obstructive uropathy is a condition in which urine cannot flow through the ureters - a pair of tubes that transport urine from the kidneys to the bladder - and out of the body. This happens because of some kind of obstruction that causes backward flow or reflux of urine into the kidneys. This can lead to swelling and damage to either one or both of your kidneys. This problem may occur in both men and women regardless of their age. Moreover, the urinary obstruction may occur in a fetus during its developmental stages.
Urinary obstruction is often the major cause of acute and chronic renal failure. Usually, the signs and symptoms are milder and develop slowly over a period of time. Identification of this problem at an early stage and prompt treatment could help prevent further kidney damage.
At Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital, our surgeons deal with urinary obstruction by getting rid of the obstacle from the ureters that is causing the blockage, for example, abnormal masses. This is the main objective of the surgical treatment of urinary obstruction.
Surgical removal of polyps, tumors, or scar tissues that develop inside or around the ureters is performed to provide a long-term solution to the problem. After this procedure, urine can flow down from the affected ureter into the bladder.
The signs and symptoms of urinary obstruction vary depending on whether the condition develops suddenly or progressively over a period of time. The common symptoms include pain in the sides and back portion of your body (flank pain), fever, nausea, and vomiting. You may also experience problems while passing urine, which indicates a ureteral blockage. Changes in bladder habits include:
A sign of urinary obstruction in a fetus is a drop in the level of the amniotic fluid volume. Urine is one of the constituents of the amniotic fluid, and as a fetus with obstruction cannot urinate, the amniotic fluid level decreases leading to complications during birth.
Your doctor will be able to diagnose urinary obstruction by using the following methods:
During physical examination, your doctor will perform the following assessments:
Laboratory studies include the following tests:
Imaging studies help in identifying any anatomical flaws and the exact site of the blockage. Imaging studies that may be required to evaluate the cause of urinary obstruction include:
The factors that predispose you to the development of urinary obstruction include:
Urinary obstruction may result from several factors such as:
In rare circumstances, the urinary obstruction may occur during pregnancy causing the reflux of urine to the kidneys. This happens because of the fetal weight compressing upon the bladder.
Urinary obstruction can be prevented by treating its underlying causes. Most people often hold back urine for an extended duration. This should be avoided as it causes weakness of the bladder muscles due to overstretching. You should urinate around 4 to 6 times a day to maintain normal functions of your bladder. Retention of urine for prolonged hours may cause deposition of stones, which may lead to urinary obstruction, over a period of time.
For any questions, information or guidance related to urinary obstruction, consult our specialty-trained, skilled urologic surgeons at Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital.
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Nickolas Tomasic, M.D.See Profile »
Sepehr Nowfar, M.D.See Profile »
Victoria C. Scott, M.D.See Profile »
George Yamauchi, M.D.See Profile »
Carrie A. Stewart, M.D.See Profile »