Renal Artery Duplex

Renal artery duplex imaging evaluates blood flow velocities and patterns in the aorta and renal arteries. According to the American College of Radiology, “Ultrasound using grayscale imaging, Doppler spectral analysis, and color Doppler imaging is a proven and useful procedure for evaluating the renovascular system.”

Many patients with hypertension are referred for a renal artery duplex because of their increased risk of renal artery stenosis. Some cases of renovascular hypertension actually develop as a result of an obstruction in the renal arteries. These cases of hypertension can usually be effectively treated by treating the obstruction.

Flow patterns within the kidneys can provide information about damage to the kidneys and extent of renal artery disease from chronic poor blood flow. Color Doppler can show renal artery perfusion and venous return. It may also be used to determine renal transplant rejection.


  • Evaluation of patients with hypertension
  • Evaluation of the native renal arteries and kidneys for evidence of renal artery disease or renal
  • Parenchymal disease
  • Presence of epigastric or flank bruit in a hypertensive patient
  • Screening for renal artery stenosis prior to medical management with ACE inhibitors
  • Presence of elevated creatinine or BUN
  • Monitoring of known renal artery stenosis
  • Suspected renal vein occlusion
  • Renal artery embolus
  • Suspected renal artery aneurysm
  • Suspected arteriovenous fistula
  • Presence of a thrill or bruit following renal biopsy
  • Evaluation of renal transplant dysfunction
  • Presence of bruit over renal transplant

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