What you can expect

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Before your intravenous pyelogram, a member of your health care team will:

  • Ask you questions about your medical history
  • Check your blood pressure, pulse and body temperature
  • Ask you to change into a hospital gown and remove jewelry, eyeglasses and any metal objects that may obscure the X-ray images
  • Place an intravenous (IV) line into a vein in your arm through which the X-ray dye will be injected
  • Ask you to urinate to ensure your bladder is empty for the exam

During intravenous pyelogram

For an intravenous pyelogram, you lie on your back on an exam table. The X-ray machine usually is either attached to or part of the table. An X-ray image intensifier — the part of the machine that obtains the images — is positioned over your abdomen. After you're positioned comfortably on the table, the exam progresses this way:

  • X-rays are taken of your urinary tract before any dye is injected.
  • X-ray dye is injected through your IV line.
  • X-ray images are taken at timed intervals as the dye flows through your kidneys to the ureters and into your bladder.
  • Toward the end of the exam, you may be asked to urinate again.
  • You then return to the exam table, so that the health care team can get X-ray images of your empty bladder.

After intravenous pyelogram

When your intravenous pyelogram is complete, the IV line is removed from your arm and you may return to your normal activities.

April 15, 2015