A Color Flow Tract in Ultrasound-Guided Random Renal Core Biopsy Predicts Complications

Marie Helene Gagnon, Michael F. Lin, Samantha Lancia, Amber Salter, Motoyo Yano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Objectives: To determine patient and procedural risk factors for major complications in ultrasound (US)-guided random renal core biopsy. Methods: Random renal biopsies performed by radiologists in the US department at a single institution between 2014 and 2018 were retrospectively reviewed. The patient's age, sex, race, and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) were recorded. The biopsy approach, needle gauge, length of cores, number of throws, and presence of a color flow tract were recorded. Outcome data included minor and major complications. Associations between variables were tested with χ2 analyses and univariable/multivariable logistic regression models. Results: A total of 231 biopsies (167 native and 64 allografts) were reviewed. There was no significant difference in the sex, age, race, or eGFR between native and allograft groups. The overall rate for any complication was 18.2%, with a 4.3% rate of major complications, which was significantly greater in native compared to allograft biopsies (6% versus 0%; P =.045). A risk analysis in native biopsies only showed that major complications were significantly associated with a low eGFR such that patients with stage 4 or 5 kidney disease had higher odds of complications (odds ratio [95% confidence interval]: stage 4, 9.405 [1.995–44.338]; P =.0393; stage 5, 10.749 [2.218–52.080]; P =.0203) than patients with normal function (eGFR >60 mL/min). The presence of a color flow tract portended a 10.7 times greater risk of having any complication (95% confidence interval, 4.595–24.994; P <.001). Other procedural factors were not significantly associated with complications. Conclusions: There is an increased risk of major complications in US-guided random native kidney biopsy in patients with a low eGFR (<30 mL/min) and a patent color flow tract in the immediate postbiopsy setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1335-1342
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Ultrasound in Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • Doppler
  • complication
  • renal biopsy
  • ultrasound guided


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