Kidney Biopsy

A kidney biopsy is the removal of a small piece of kidney tissue or cells. A doctor who specializes in tissue diagnosis uses a microscope to look at the tissue for abnormalities.

  • Call Your Doctor

    After arriving home, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:

    • Bloody urine 24 hours after biopsy or a lot of blood in the urine
    • Difficulty urinating
    • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
    • Lightheadedness
    • Pain that is worse at biopsy site
    • Pain that you cannot control with the medications that you have been given
    • A constant urge to urinate
    • Pain or burning when you urinate
    • Redness or drainage at biopsy site

    In case of an emergency, call for medical help right away.

  • Definition

    A kidney biopsy is the removal of a small piece of kidney tissue or cells. A doctor who specializes in tissue diagnosis uses a microscope to look at the tissue for abnormalities.

    Kidneys
    Kidney ureter
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  • What to Expect

  • Reasons for Procedure

    A kidney biopsy is done to diagnose a disease or medical condition.

    A kidney biopsy may be done if you have:

    • Blood in the urine
    • High levels of protein in the urine
    • Low kidney function
    • A growth on the kidney
    • Kidney infection
    • A cyst on the kidney

    After the tissue is examined, your doctor can make a diagnosis and provide treatment.


    If you had a
    kidney transplant, this procedure may be done to see if your new kidney is working properly.

  • Possible Complications

    Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you have a kidney biopsy, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

    • Bleeding
    • Infection
    • Pain

    Smoking may increase the risk of complications.

    Be sure to discuss these risks with your doctor before the biopsy.