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October 31, 2020 — Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology


Kidney transplantation is the best choice for patients with end-stage renal disease. To date, allograft biopsy remains the gold standard for revealing pathologic changes and predicting long-term outcomes. However, the invasive nature of transplant biopsy greatly limits its application. Ultrasound has been a first-line examination for evaluating kidney allografts for a long time. Advances in ultrasound in recent years, especially the growing number of studies in elastography and contrast-enhanced ultrasonography(CEUS), have shed new light on its application in kidney transplantation. Elastography, including strain elastography and shear wave elastography, is used mainly to assess allograft stiffness and, thus, predict renal fibrosis. CEUS has been used extensively in evaluating blood microperfusion, assessing acute kidney injury and detecting different complications after transplantation. Requiring the use of microbubbles also makes CEUS a novel method of gene transfer and drug delivery, enabling promising targeted diagnosis and therapy. In this review, we summarize the advances of elastography and CEUS in kidney transplantation and evaluate their potential efficiency in becoming a better complement to or even substitute for transplant biopsy in the future.

Authors: Ruochen Qi; Cheng Yang; Tongyu Zhu

Department of Urology, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University,

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