Munson Health
Intravenous Pyelogram

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by Carmack A

(IVP; Excretory Urography; Intravenous Urography [IVU])


Reasons for Test

An IVP is done to identify:

Possible Complications

Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have an IVP, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:
Some factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
  • Allergy to the iodine contrast dye
  • Blood disorders
  • Poor kidney function
  • Certain medicines
Pregnant women should not have this test.

What to Expect

Prior to test

Leading up to the test:

Description of the Test

An IV will be inserted. This will provide the contrast dye and any medicine that you will need. For the next 30-60 minutes, you will lie on a table while x-rays are taken at regular intervals. You may be asked to hold your breath each time an x-ray is taken. The dye will highlight your urinary system on the x-ray. This will allow your doctor to see these body parts at work and detect problems. Before the last x-ray, you will empty your bladder in a bathroom.

After Test

You will be able to resume your normal activities and diet. Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions .

How Long Will It Take?

About 60-90 minutes

Will It Hurt?

No. You may feel a sensation of warmth or heat as the contrast dye travels through your body.


It may take a few days to receive your test results. Your doctor will discuss the results with you, as well as any treatment.


National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse

Urology Care Foundation



Health Canada

Kidney Foundation of Canada



Guide to diagnostic tests. Harvard Health Publications website. Available at: Accessed July 12, 2013.

Intravenous pyelogram. Radiology Info website. Available at: Updated April 19, 2013. Accessed July 12, 2013.


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