The claw sign is useful in determining whether a mass arises from a solid structure or is located adjacent to it and distorts the outline.
It refers to the sharp angles on either side of the mass, which the surrounding normal parenchyma forms when the mass has arisen from the parenchyma. As suc...
Bullet and bodkin sign is the appearance of the ureter when there is an abrupt transition in the ureteral caliber. Bullet in the name is represented by the dilated proximal ureteric segment which appears to be perched on the constricted / non-dilated encased ureter which gives an appearance of a...
Medical devices in the abdomen and pelvis are important to be recognised, just like medical devices of the chest. Often we ignore these devices, considering them to be incidental and non-pathological, however it is essential to be aware of potential complications.
Cannonball metastases refer to large, well circumscribed, round pulmonary metastases that appear, well, like cannonballs. The French term "envolée de ballons" which translates to "balloons release" is also used to describe this same appearance.
Metastases with such an appearance are classically...
The calyceal crescent sign (Dunbar crescents) refers to the early intravenous pyelogram (IVP) appearance of markedly dilated renal calyces. It is formed by early contrast opacification of the dilated collecting ducts and ducts of Bellini with the characteristic shape as a result of the associate...
HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN) is commonly seen in patients with HIV/AIDS and leads to end stage renal disease (ESRD). The diagnosis is not imaging-based and must be confirmed by renal biopsy.
HIVAN is seen in patients at advanced stages of HIV and AIDS, but it can also be see...
The Weigert-Meyer law describes the relationship of the upper and lower renal moieties in duplicated collecting systems to their drainage inferiorly.
With duplex kidney and complete ureteral duplication, the upper renal and lower renal moiety have their own ureters with each ...
The balloon on a string sign refers to the appearance of the ureter on intravenous urography in ureteropelvic junction obstruction. It is seen due to the high and eccentric point of the exit of ureter from a dilated renal pelvis.
The aubergine sign (also known as egg-plant sign or deformity) is a clinical sign of a fractured penis. Haemorrhage beyond the tunica albuginea produces swelling and bruising of the penis simulating the appearance of an aubergine.
The angular interface sign is used to characterise an exophytic renal mass, in which the exophytic renal mass has an angular interface with the renal parenchyma. In other words, the exophytic lesion has a tapered pyramidal contour or definite apex within the renal parenchyma.
Due to its high se...
Androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS), also known as the testicular feminisation syndrome, results from end-organ resistance to androgens, particularly testosterone. AIS may be complete or incomplete with variable imaging findings.
The incidence may vary depending on whether it i...
Renal angiomyolipomas (AMLs) are a type of benign renal neoplasm encountered both sporadically and as part of a phakomatosis, most commonly tuberous sclerosis. They are considered one of a number of tumours with perivascular epitheloid cellular differentiation (PEComas) and are composed of vascu...
Renal artery stenosis (RAS) refers to a narrowing of a renal artery. When the process occurs slowly, it leads to secondary hypertension. Acute renal artery stenosis does not lead to hypersecretion of renin.
When the stenosis occurs slowly, collateral vessels form and supply the kidne...
The retropubic space (also known as the prevesical space or cave of Retzius) is an extraperitoneal space located posterior to the pubic symphysis and anterior to the urinary bladder. It is separated from the anterior abdominal wall by the transversalis fascia and extends to the level of the umbi...
Testicular trauma is the third most-common cause of acute scrotal pain and may result in various degree of damage to the testes.
Testicular rupture and testicular ischaemia/infarct are two severe complications which need to be ruled out. Other injuries that can occur include 1:
Scrotal haematocoeles are collections of blood within the scrotal sac, but outside of the testicle.
A haematocele normally occurs following trauma to the scrotum, or on occasion following surgery. Some think that a varicocele is a risk factor for developing a haematocoele 4.
Radiological manifestations of recreational drug use are not infrequently seen as the use of recreational drugs is widespread.
Interestingly, recent reports have suggested a decreasing incidence of reported drug use in the general population over the past decade, but it remains th...
Transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) is the most common primary neoplasm of the urinary bladder, and bladder TCC is the most common tumour of the entire urinary system.
This article concerns itself with transitional cell carcinomas of the bladder specifically. Related articles include:
Urinary bladder rupture is usually seen in the context of significant trauma.
Bladder rupture can be categorised into five types depending on the location and extent of the rupture.
This is commonly seen but sometimes not classed as true rupture, since it in...
Abscesses are focal confined collections of suppurative inflammatory material and can be thought of as having three components 1:
a central core consisting of necrotic inflammatory cells and local tissue
peripheral halo of viable neutrophils
surrounded by a 'capsule' with dilated blood vessel...
Intra-abdominal calcification in a neonate can be caused by a number of pathologies that cause calcification within the peritoneal space or within organs.
The commonest cause is meconium peritonitis which is the result of aseptic peritonitis secondary...
Crossed fused renal ectopia essentially refers to an anomaly where the kidneys are fused and located on the same side of the midline.
The estimated incidence is around 1 out of 1000 births 1. There is a recognised male predilection with a 2:1 male to female ratio. More than 90% of...
Ectopic kidney (or renal ectopia) is a developmental renal anomaly characterised by abnormal anatomical location of one or both of the kidneys.
They can occur in several forms:
cross fused renal ectopia
ectopic thoracic kidney
The estimated incidence of an ectopi...
The pampiniform plexus is the venous network of approximately 10 veins draining the testes and epididymis. The network surrounds the testicular artery in the spermatic cord and lies anterior to the ductus deferens. Each network coalesces to form the testicular veins.
Along with the cremaster an...
Pseudobladder refers to a pelvic cystic mass that simulates the urinary bladder.
The location of the lesion should allow differentiation from the bladder but if doubt exists and clinical necessity arises, a delayed phase CT or MRI with excreted contrast or IDC-administered retrograde contrast f...
Nutcracker syndrome is a vascular compression disorder and refers to the compression of the left renal vein between the superior mesenteric artery (SMA) and aorta. This can lead to renal venous hypertension, resulting in rupture of thin-walled veins into the collecting system with resultant haem...
A bifid ureter, or ureter fissus, is an example of incomplete duplication of a duplex collecting system.
Present in ~5% (range 1-10%) of the population 1-2.
A bifid ureter is formed when there is a duplex kidney (separate pelvicalyceal collecting systems) drain i...
Hereditary angiopathy with nephropathy, aneurysms, and muscle cramps (HANAC) syndrome is an autosomal dominant monogenic COL4A1-related disorder.
The exact prevalence is unknown.
The cardinal features of HANAC syndrome are helpfully described in the name of...
COL4A1-related disorders are a group of autosomal dominant disorders caused by a mutation in the COL4A1 gene.
The exact prevalence is unknown, but the group of disorders is considered to be under-recognised, especially asymptomatic variants 1.
The clinical ...
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or benign prostatic enlargement (BPE) is an extremely common condition in elderly men and is a major cause of bladder outflow obstruction.
The term benign prostatic hypertrophy was formerly used for this condition, but since there is actually an ...
Emphysematous pyelitis is defined as isolated gas production inside the excretory system, secondary to acute bacterial infection. It is a relatively benign entity and needs accurate differentiation from emphysematous pyelonephritis, which is a much morbid condition. It has an excellent prognosis...
Emphysematous pyelonephritis refers to a morbid infection of kidneys, with characteristic gas formation within or around the kidneys. If not treated early, it may lead to fulminant sepsis and carries a high mortality.
The patient usually presents with flank pain, urinary...
The gonadal arteries are the paired primary vascular supply to the ovaries in the female and the testes in the male. As the anatomy of the gonadal arteries differs substantially between the sexes, they are covered separately:
The renal arteries originate from the abdominal aorta and enter the renal hila to supply the kidneys. Any variant in arterial supply is important to clinicians undertaking surgery or other interventional renal procedures.
Arises from the abdominal aorta at the L1-2 vert...
The middle adrenal (suprarenal) artery is one of the three adrenal arteries that supply the adrenal gland.
The middle suprarenal arteries arise from the aorta on each side between the inferior phrenic artery and the renal artery. They run laterally across the diaphragmati...
Scrotal pyocoeles are purulent fluid collections in the scrotal sac that generally occur in conjunction with epididymo-orchitis.
Scrotal pyocoeles are typically a complication of epididymo-orchitis and testicular abscess but can also occur following trauma or surgery. The purulent fl...
PI-RADS (Prostate Imaging Reporting and Data System) refers to a structured reporting scheme for evaluating the prostate for prostate cancer. It is designed to be used in a pre-therapy patient.
The original PI-RADS score was annotated, revised and published as the second version, PI-RADSv2 6 by...
The Bosniak classification system of renal cystic masses divides renal cystic masses into five categories based on imaging characteristics on contrast-enhanced CT. It is helpful in predicting a risk of malignancy and suggesting either follow up or treatment.
Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), also sometimes more vaguely referred to as "adult polycystic kidney disease", is as the name would suggest, a hereditary form of adult cystic renal disease.
Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease is one of the most commo...
The cortical rim sign is useful in distinguishing acute pyelonephritis from a segmental renal infarct and is seen on contrast enhanced CT or MRI.
The wedges of reduced enhancement seen in the setting of acute pyelonephritis represent oedema and ischaemia which involves the whole wedge or renal ...
Renal infarction results from interruption of the normal blood supply to part of, or to the whole kidney. The main imaging differential diagnosis includes pyelonephritis and renal tumours.
The demographics of affected patients will depend on the underlying cause, although as most ...
The free/total PSA ratio (%fPSA) is an additional new parameter used in assessing PSA levels. Some authors 1,2 recommend that men with PSA levels of 4.1 to 10 ng/mL who are not suspected of having prostate cancer by whatever means should undergo %fPSA measurement and then be carefully monitored ...
Handy mnemonics to recall the contents of the spermatic cord are:
Piles Don't Contribute To A Good Sex Life
Protection Doesn't Contribute To A Good Sex Life
3 arteries, 3 nerves, 3 other things
Piles Don't Contribute To A Good Sex Life
Protection Doesn't Contribute To A Good Sex L...
RASopathies are a class of developmental disorders caused by germline mutations in genes that encode for components or regulators of the Ras/mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway.
As a group, RASopathies represent one of the most common malformation syndromes, with an in...
In 2017, the Adrenal Subcommittee of the Incidental Findings Committee of the American College of Radiology published a revised algorithm for the management of incidental adrenal masses in patients who are:
adults (i.e. 18-year-old or over)
asymptomatic for adrenal pathology
referred for imag...
A helpful mnemonic to remember the 4 segments of the male urethra from proximal to distal.
Pet My Big Penis
Posterior urethra equates to the prostatic and membranous urethras. Anterior urethra equates to the bulbous and penile urethras.
A handy mnemonic to recall the layers of the scrotum is:
Some Damn Englishman Called It The Testes
D: dartos fascia and muscle
E: external spermatic fascia
C: cremasteric fascia
I: internal spermatic fascia
T: tunica vaginalis
T: tunica albuginea
Adrenal adenomas are the most common adrenal mass lesion and are often found incidentally during abdominal imaging for other reasons. In all cases, but especially in the setting of known current or previous malignancy, adrenal adenomas need to be distinguished from adrenal metastases or other ad...
Adrenal lesions cover a broad spectrum from benign to neoplastic entities. Due to increased use of cross-sectional imaging they are frequently detected as incidental lesions ("incidentalomas"). If found incidentally, please refer to the Management of incidental adrenal masses: American College o...
An incidentaloma is a radiological neologism to denote a mass lesion found incidentally and of dubious clinical significance. Although it can refer to any incidental lesion (e.g. pituitary 3, thyroid 4), it is most often used to denote an incidental adrenal lesion, which is commonly an adrenal a...
Primary adrenal cortical carcinoma is a highly malignant but rare neoplasm. It may present as a hormonally active or inactive tumour.
Although men and women are affected equally, functioning tumours are more common in females, who are also more likely to have an associated endocr...
Neuroblastomas are tumours of neuroblastic origin corresponding to the most common extracranial solid childhood malignancies and the third commonest childhood tumours after leukaemia and brain malignancies. It accounts for ~15% of childhood cancer deaths.
The tumours typically occ...
Ganglioneuromas are fully differentiated neuronal tumours that do not contain immature elements and potentially occur anywhere along the peripheral autonomic ganglion sites.
On imaging, usually, they present as well-defined solid masses and can be quite large at presentation. Generally, they a...
Adrenal haemorrhage can result from a variety of traumatic and non-traumatic causes. When unilateral, it is often clinically silent. In contrast, bilateral adrenal haemorrhage can lead to catastrophic adrenal insufficiency.
The large majority of patients with unilateral a...
Adrenal haemangiomas are rare benign tumours that are usually incidentally identified (one example of an adrenal incidentaloma). Its significance mainly relates to the difficulty in differentiation from other malignant lesions.
Although these can be found at any age, they are mos...
Adrenal calcification is not a rare finding in healthy asymptomatic people and is usually the result of previous haemorrhage or tuberculosis. Addison's disease patients only occasionally have calcification.
sepsis: Waterhouse-Friderichsen syndrome
The differential for bilaterally enlarged adrenal glands is relatively limited:
micronodular adrenal hyperplasia
macronodular adrenal hyperplasia
adrenocorticotropin (ACTH)-independent macronodular adrenocortical hyperplasia (AIMAH) 2
Despite its small size, the adrenal gland is affected by a relatively large number of neoplastic entities:
adrenal cortical carcinoma
adrenal lesions: for a more general list of...
Adrenal lymphangiomas, also known as cystic adrenal lymphangiomas, are rare, benign cystic adrenal lesions.
Adrenal lymphangiomas are extremely rare; prevalence is estimated at 0.06% 8. They can occur at any age, with a peak incidence between the 3rd and 6th decades of life. Accor...
Adrenal pseudocysts account for ~40% of adrenal cysts and are more likely than simple adrenal cysts to be symptomatic.
Pseudocysts do not have an epithelial lining and typically arise after an episode of adrenal haemorrhage. There is an ~7% association with malignancy (e.g. from haem...
Adrenal cysts are rare lesions and are commonly incidental findings.
Adrenal cysts are reported to be rare with an incidence of <1% 1.
Patients can present with pain or swelling, although a significant portion (~40%) are incidental findings 1,3.
Adrenal myelolipomas are rare benign, and usually asymptomatic, tumours of the adrenal gland characterised by the predominance of mature adipocytes.
On imaging, they usually present as large masses with a variable amount of fat-containing components.
Rare tumours with estimated ...
Adrenal hyperplasia refers to nonmalignant growth (enlargement) of the adrenal glands and is a rare cause of ACTH-independent Cushing syndrome, with unilateral adrenal cortical adenomas being the commonest. 20% of Conn syndrome cases are secondary to adrenal hyperplasia. In diffuse hyperplasia, ...
Adrenal metastases are the most common malignant lesions involving the adrenal gland. Metastases are usually bilateral but may also be unilateral. Unilateral involvement is more prevalent on the left side (ratio of 1.5:1).
They are present at autopsy in up to 27% of patients with ...
Prostate specific antigen (PSA) is currently used as a tumour marker for prostate adenocarcinoma.
PSA is a 33 kilodalton glycoprotein produced in prostate epithelial cells. Its normal physiologic role is as a liquifying agent for seminal fluid and the normal amount in human serum is usually ver...
Pheochromocytomas are an uncommon tumour of the adrenal gland, with characteristic clinical, and to a lesser degree, imaging features. The tumours are said to follow a 10% rule:
~10% are extra-adrenal
~10% are bilateral
~10% are malignant
~10% are found in children
~10% are familial
Retroperitoneal fibrosis (RPF), is a condition that has previously been described as chronic periaortitis. It is an uncommon fibrotic reaction in the retroperitoneum that typically presents with ureteric obstruction.
The disease is part of a spectrum of entities that have a common pathogenic pr...
Cystitis cystica is the same condition as ureteritis cystica and closely related to cystitis glandularis. It is a relatively common chronic reactive inflammatory disorders that occur in the setting of chronic irritation of the bladder mucosa.
Cystitis cystica is seen in a variety ...
Herniation of the urinary bladder is a relatively uncommon but not a rare condition. It occurs when the urinary bladder or ureter herniates into the inguinal canal, scrotal sac or femoral canal. Herniations through ischiorectal, obturator or abdominal wall openings have also been described. Blad...
There are multiple handy mnemonics to recall the erector spinae muscles. They usually describe the position from lateral to medial.
I Like Standing
I Love Sex
I Long for Spinach
I Like Siri
A bladder inflammatory pseudotumour is a nonneoplastic proliferation of cells.
This entity is more common in adults, with a mean age at diagnosis of 38 years.
Patients present most commonly with an ulcerating bleeding mass, haematuria, and voiding symptoms...
A common mnemonic for cortical nephrocalcinosis is:
C: cortical necrosis
A: Alport syndrome
G: (chronic) glomerulonephritis
medullary nephrocalcinosis mnemonic
Ureteric injury is a relatively uncommon, but severe event, which may result in serious complications as a diagnosis is often delayed.
Ureteric injuries unreliably demonstrate macro- or micro-scopic haematuria as it may be absent in up to 25% of patients 5, 6. Classic cl...
A simple mnemonic to recall the common causes of bladder calcification is:
C: cytotoxic: see radiation- and chemotherapy-induced cystitis
R: radiation: see radiation- and chemotherapy-induced cystitis
I: interstitial cystitis
The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system and is the largest male accessory gland. It typically weighs between 20-40 grams with an average size of 3 x 4 x 2 cm. The prostate is comprised of 70% glandular tissue and 30% fibromuscular or stromal tissue 1-3 and provides approximate...
Prostatic utricle cyst (PUC) is an area of focal dilatation that occurs within the prostatic utricle.
They are midline cystic masses in the male pelvis and can be very difficult or impossible to distinguish from a Mullerian duct cyst.
Utricle cysts are most often detected in the ...
Jackstone calculus is the name assigned to the appearance of a subset of urinary calculi.
Jackstone calculi are almost always composed of calcium oxalate dihydrate. They are nearly always created, and thus, located, in the bladder rather than the upper urinary tract.
They are compos...
Accessory renal arteries are a common variant and are present in ~25% (range 20-30%) of the population. Their proper identification is of utmost importance for surgical planning prior to live donor transplantation 3,4 and renal artery embolisation for various reasons 5.
The term extra renal art...
Pseudohydronephrosis refers to normal anatomy or non-significant pathologies that may mimic hydronephrosis. There is usually fluid-density material within a dilated of a part of the urinary tract, but without other signs of obstruction such as retroperitoneal fat stranding, renal perfusion abnor...
Renal sinus cysts are simple renal cysts that lie within the renal sinus.
It is worth noting that some authors 5,6 use the term renal lymphangiectasia interchangeably. It is likely that true renal lymphangiectasia is a separate and rare disorder, and is thus discussed separately.
Imperforate hymen is a congenital condition in which the hymen is without a normal central opening.
It happens in 0.1% of the female population, usually an isolated finding.
Primary amenorrhea with cyclic lower abdominal pain during menarche age. An imperforat...
Testicular germ cell tumours account for 90% of primary tumours of the testes. They are the most common nonhematologic malignancy in men 15-49 years old.
They are divided into:
testicular seminoma: 40% of germ cell tumours 1
non-seminomatous germ cell tumour: 60% of germ cell tumours
Hydronephrosis is defined as dilatation of the urinary collecting system of the kidney (the calyces, the infundibula, and the pelvis) 1. The term hydroureteronephrosis is used when the dilatation also involves the ureter.
Hydronephrosis in fetuses and newborns has specific causes that are cove...
Bladder diverticulum are outpouchings from the bladder wall, whereby mucosa herniates through the bladder wall. They may be solitary or multiple in nature and can vary considerably in size.
There are two peaks - one at 10 years and the other at 60-70 years 2.
Diabetes insipidus (DI) is the deficiency or resistance to the hormone vasopressin (antidiuretic hormone), which results in polyuria and polydipsia.
DI occurs in 3 per 100,000 people 2.
DI may be described as 1-3:
central/neurogenic/hypothalamic: vasopressin deficie...
Lipomatosis is a condition where there is diffuse excessive fat deposition within the body. This can especially affect certain regions.
neck and upper region of trunk
lipomatous hypertrophy of the interatrial septum
lipomatous metaplasia of th...
Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis (XGP) is a rare form of chronic pyelonephritis and represents a chronic granulomatous disease resulting in a non-functioning kidney. Radiographic features are usually specific.
Xanthogranulomatous pyelonephritis is seen essentially in all age gro...
Nephrostomy is a common urologic or interventional radiology procedure in which a tube/catheter is introduced into the renal collecting system (usually the renal pelvis).
Nephrostomies can either be
"open" nephrostomy: after a urological surgical procedure, such as a UPJ stone removal
This article serves as a resource for access to normal examples of imaging studies of the genitourinary tract.
KUB: example 1
abdominal x-ray: example 1
IVU: example 1
renal ultrasound: example 1
renal ultrasound: example 2
renal ultrasound: exa...
Zinner syndrome is a triad of Wolffian duct anomalies that includes unilateral renal agenesis, ipsilateral seminal vesicle cyst, and ejaculatory duct obstruction 1.
Patients are typically diagnosed at 3rd or 4th decade of life and often present with perineal pain, recurre...
Granulomatous prostatitis is a nodular form of chronic prostatitis. It is usually diagnised by biopsy.
iatrogenic: (BCG,post radiation)
systemic disease such as
One form of classificiations is as
Fetal megacystis refers to the presence of an unusually large bladder in a fetus.
The estimated incidence of antenatal imaging is at ~1:1500 pregnancies.
It can result from a number of causes but the main underlying mechanism is either a distal stenosis or reflux.
Acute pyelonephritis is a bacterial infection of the renal pelvis and parenchyma most commonly seen in young women. It remains common and continues to have significant morbidity in certain groups of patients.
The incidence of acute pyelonephritis parallels that of lower urinary tr...