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HF 4553

Preparing Your Child for a Kidney (Renal) Biopsy


Your child is scheduled to have a kidney (renal) biopsy on _____ at __________ with Dr. _______________________. 

The biopsy is being done to figure out the cause of your child's kidney problem. This helps us decide what the best treatment is. These guidelines help prepare your child for the biopsy.

Before the Biopsy

Blood tests need to be done to see if your child has a bleeding problem. These tests are routine before a biopsy. They are done the morning of the biopsy. You may be able to have the lab work done a few days before the biopsy. Have your doctor fax the results to us. Your doctor will talk with you about this.

Do not give your child aspirin or any over-the-counter medicines that may contain aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen for 10 days before the biopsy. Aspirin or aspirin-like products can prevent the clotting of blood. You may give your child acetaminophen (Tylenol®) if you need to for any reason.

You may want to bring along your child's special blanket, pillow, or toy for comfort.

Our Pediatric Sedation Service will contact you before the biopsy. They will tell you when your child can eat and drink.

Biopsy Day

Please bring all medicines your child will need to take the day of the biopsy with you. You will be able to give your child’s own medicines the day of the biopsy.

Report to the Diagnostic and Therapy center on the 1st floor of the American Family Children’s Hospital. Your child’s blood is drawn and an IV (intravenous line) is placed. The IV is placed so that medicine can be given to make your child drowsy.

The nurses and doctors from the pediatric sedation team will do a brief history and exam. They will decide what is the best medicine to use. 

The biopsy is done using ultrasound. You may stay with your child during the biopsy. There is also a waiting room if you would rather wait outside the room. 

The biopsy takes about 30 to 45 minutes. 

After the Biopsy 

Your child will need to lie in bed for at least 6 to 8 hours. Your child can do quiet activities and eat. Your child will only be able to get up to go to the bathroom.

Blood pressure and heart rate are checked by the nurse every so often after the procedure. This is routine after a biopsy.

If your child needs to go to the bathroom, please let the nurse know. Each urine sample needs to be looked at and measured. It is common to see blood in your child’s urine. Most often this clears within 6 to 12 hours.

As soon as your child is fully awake, it is ok to have something to drink or eat. The nurse keeps track of how much your child is drinking. Please encourage your child to drink.

Most children can go home or to the Ronald McDonald House at the end of the day. A few children may need to stay overnight.

After Your Child is Home

If your child goes home or to the Ronald McDonald House the night of the biopsy, please have your child rest for the rest of the evening and night.

No heavy exercise, sports, gym class or heavy lifting for 2 weeks. We will give you a doctor’s excuse for gym classes at school.

You can expect your child to have some pain. You may give acetaminophen (Tylenol®) as directed.

When to Call

If your child has any of these symptoms, please call us:

  • Back pain that is new or not getting better each day

  • Stomach pain

  • Blood in the urine that starts after you have gone home

  • Dizziness

  • Fever greater than 100.4° F

Phone Numbers

Pediatric Specialty Clinic: (608) 263-6420 option 1

Toll free number 1-800-323-8942

In an emergency, if you need to contact the doctor after hours, weekends and holidays, call (608) 263-6420. This will give you the paging operator. Ask for the Pediatric Nephrologist on call. Leave your name and phone number with the area code. The doctor will call you back.

If you are a patient receiving care at UnityPoint – Meriter, Swedish American or a health system outside of UW Health, please use the phone numbers provided in your discharge instructions for any questions or concerns.