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Patient Instructions

  • Nephrostomy Tube Placement

Patient Instructions - Nephrostomy Tube Placement

A nephrostomy tube is placed to drain urine from the kidney when it is being blocked from draining normally into the bladder.

Before your Procedure

  • Do not eat or drink after midnight before the procedure.

  • Certain medications may increase your risk of bleeding and may need to be held prior to your procedure. You may resume these medications the day after your procedure unless otherwise instructed.

During your Procedure

  • Sedation and pain medication is provided for comfort.

  • You will lie on your stomach during the procedure.

  • Your back will be cleaned and the site numbed.

  • An ultrasound machine may be used to visualize the kidney.

  • A needle is placed into the kidney and a contrast dye will be injected.

  • The tube will then be inserted after the site has been dilated to the size of the tube.

  • The tube will be secured when it is in place and a drainage bag will be connected.

  • The procedure takes 1-1 ½ hours to complete.

After your Procedure

  • The nephrostomy tube and the drainage bag will be secured to your leg or your clothing. Be sure not to pull on it or disconnect it.

  • You may take a shower, but cover the dressing with plastic wrap so it doesn’t get wet.

  • Do not take a bath, swim or sit in a hot tub.

When to call your doctor

  • Call your doctor if the catheter is partially or completely pulled out or if there is a large amount of bloody urine. Urine may be blood tinged for the first few days.

  • Call if there is leakage around the catheter or no drainage from the tube – the tube may be plugged.

  • Report a fever or any signs of infection at the insertion site such as redness, drainage or swelling.

Providing safe, quality patient care is our highest priority. To help ensure quality and safety, we ask that you do not bring young children with you to your appointments, as children are not allowed to accompany you during Imaging procedures. Staff is unable to monitor your child in your absence.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your provider. 

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