Contrast-enhanced doppler ultrasound of renal artery stenosis: Prologue to a promising future

Riccardo Lencioni, Stefania Pinto, Dania Cioni, Carlo Bartolozzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Over the past few years, there has been extensive research for a reliable, noninvasive, and nonionizing imaging method to screen for renal artery stenosis (RAS). Doppler ultrasound (US) is one of many modalities that have been evaluated for the detection of RAS. The lack of standardization in examination protocols and diagnostic criteria, as well as the wide differences in reported accuracy among different laboratories, however, have prevented universal acceptance of this technique as a reliable screening test for RAS. Recently, the introduction of US contrast agents has substantially expanded the potentials of color Doppler US. The use of microbubble echo enhancers in combination with harmonic Doppler imaging has been shown to improve diagnostic confidence by improving the operator's ability to visualize the renal arteries, and to significantly reduce the number of equivocal examinations. In addition, contrast-enhanced harmonic Doppler US can currently provide objective functional assessment of RAS through analysis of time-intensity renal enhancement curve. State-of-the-art contrast-enhanced Doppler US seems to have the potential to become a useful screening test for patients at risk from renovascular hypertension and a tool for follow-up of patients who undergo revascularization procedures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)767-773
Number of pages7
Issue number7 II
StatePublished - 1999


  • Doppler ultrasound
  • Renal artery stenosis
  • SonoVue(TM) (BR1)
  • Ultrasound contrast agents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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