Biopsy Muscle

March 17 20:20 2019 Print This Article

Biopsy Muscle is an aid in the diagnosis of muscle-wasting diseases such as muscular dystrophy. Under local anaesthetic a small cut is made in the skin to give access to an affected muscle, a sample of which is taken for examination under a microscope. This may reveal the cause of the disorder. The cut is closed with a stitch or two. Muscle biopsy causes little discomfort and takes about 15 minutes.

The test is sometimes used to evaluate a transplanted kidney. It is also used to evaluate an unexplained drop in kidney function, persistent blood in the urine, or protein in the urine. The risks of a kidney biopsy are very small. Severe bleeding may occur after the procedure. There is also a slight chance that an infection or a lump of blood under the skin that looks black and blue (hematoma) may develop. In most cases, the hematoma disappears by itself and does not cause any pain. Very rarely, the patient may develop high blood pressure, and the bleeding may be severe enough to require a transfusion.

Why It Is Done?

A kidney biopsy is done to:

  • Diagnose kidney disease when there is unexplained, persistent blood or protein in the urine or when there is reduced kidney function, as determined by kidney function tests.
  • Monitor kidney disease and evaluate the effectiveness of treatment.
  • Diagnose proteinuria which is excessive protein in your urine.
  • Diagnose kidney abnormalities seen on an ultrasound or a CT scan.

How to prepare for the test?

  • Inform the doctor of any drug allergies you may have, which medications you are taking, if you have bleeding problems, and if you are pregnant. You must sign a consent form.
  • You may be restricted from food or fluid before the test.

Before the Test

  • Avoid food and fluid for 8 hours before the test.
  • Tell your doctor about any allergies you have and medicines you take.
  • Talk with your doctor to make sure you understand the need for a biopsy.
  • If you are pregnant or suspect that you are pregnant, you should notify your physician.
  • You may receive a sedative prior to the procedure to help you relax. Because the sedative may make you drowsy, you will need to arrange for someone to drive you home.

What the risks are?

  • The main risk is bleeding from the kidney which, in 1% of patients, may require a blood transfusion.
  • There is a very minimal chance of infection.
  • There can be bleeding into the muscle, which might cause soreness.

Contraindications and Precautions

  • Biopsy should be avoided in patients with obstructed kidneys, reflux nephropathy and kidneys with significant discrepancy in size and function as assessed by radionuclide studies.
  • Patients with a solitary (or solitary functioning) kidney are normally considered for open surgical biopsy.
  • Patients with chronic renal failure and bilaterally small, shrunken kidneys should not undergo biopsy. The technique is then very difficult and the biopsy appearances are very unlikely to provide any benefit for clinical management.
  • Percutaneous renal biopsy should not be undertaken in patients with polycystic kidney disease.
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