Vesicoureteral reflux in pediatric age: where are we today?

Emanuela Altobelli, Simona Gerocarni Nappo, Michele Guidotti, Paolo Caione

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although the diagnosis of vesicoureteral reflux and of reflux nephropathy is a well-established and shared procedure, its treatment nowadays is still very controversial. New developments on the knowledge of pathophysiology of renal damage associated to reflux opened the way towards a different diagnostic work-up and different therapeutic approaches. Recently, the "top-down" diagnostic approach has gained wider interest, versus the "down-top" protocol. The attention has recently focused on the renal parenchyma damage and less interest has been given to the presence and the radiological degree of vesicoureteral reflux. The review criteria were based on an in-depth search of references conducted on PubMed, using the terms "vesicoureteral reflux", "children", "incidence", "etiology", "diagnosis", "treatment" and "outcomes". The selection of the papers cited in this review was influenced by the content and the relevance to the points focused in the article.Conservative approaches include no treatment option with watchful waiting, long-term antibiotic prophylaxis and bladder rehabilitation. The operative treatment consists of endoscopic, open, laparoscopic and robotic procedures to stop the refluxing ureter.No final consensus has been achieved in literature yet, and further studies are necessary in order to better define the subset of children at risk of developing progression of renal damage.This review aims to clarify the diagnostic management and the urological-nephrological treatment of reflux in pediatric age, on the basis of a review of the best-published evidence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-87
Number of pages12
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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