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Open Access Highly Accessed Case report

Extraperitoneal urine leak after renal transplantation: the role of radionuclide imaging and the value of accompanying SPECT/CT - a case report

Hongju Son, Sherif Heiba, Lale Kostakoglu and Josef Machac*

Author Affiliations

The Division of Nuclear Medicine, Department of Radiology, The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA

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BMC Medical Imaging 2010, 10:23  doi:10.1186/1471-2342-10-23

Published: 20 October 2010



The differentiation of the nature of a fluid collection as a complication of kidney transplantation is important for management and treatment planning. Early and delayed radionuclide renography can play an important role in the evaluation of a urine leak. However, it is sometimes limited in the evaluation of the exact location and extent of a urine leak.

Case Presentation

A 71-year-old male who had sudden anuria, scrotal swelling and elevated creatinine level after cadaveric renal transplantation performed Tc-99 m MAG3 renography to evaluate the renal function, followed by an ultrasound which was unremarkable. An extensive urine leak was evident on the planar images. However, an exact location of the urine leak was unknown. Accompanying SPECT/CT images confirmed a urine leak extending from the lower aspect of the transplant kidney to the floor of the pelvic cavity, presacral region and the scrotum via right inguinal canal as well as to the right abdominal wall.


Renal scintigraphy is very useful to detect a urine leak after renal transplantation. However, planar imaging is sometimes limited in evaluating the anatomical location and extent of a urine leak accurately. In that case accompanying SPECT/CT images are very helpful and valuable to evaluate the anatomical relationships exactly.