What is Kidney Biopsy and How does it Help?

Kidney Biopsy

What is Kidney Biopsy and How does it Help?

In the medical test of kidney biopsy, a tissue sample of the kidney is cut and taken out, and examined under a microscope. This examination of tissue is done to evaluate the specific cause of the kidney related issue. A kidney biopsy is usually the last test done in case you are diagnosed with kidney failure. The symptoms for which this test is suggested are; proteinuria, idiopathic kidney disease, last stage Glomerulonephritis, recommended kidney replacement surgery, etc.

At the hospital, a kidney biopsy is usually done in the radiology room. It can also be performed at an outpatient clinic by a professional practitioner.

What is a kidney biopsy?

Kidney biopsy is a major form of test in the process of diagnosis of kidney disease which helps the doctors to specify the cause of your kidney disease. It also helps to evaluate the intensity of the disease and the extent of damage it has caused. Some important findings through kidney biopsy are; sclerosis, inflammation due to Glomerulonephritis, and deposition of protein. By such a precise evaluation of so many diverse factors of kidney disease, this test aids the doctor to rule out the best treatment option for your kidney related disease.

kidney biopsy

One of the secondary but major uses of this test is to map out the condition of the transplanted kidney. Along with examining the functionality of kidneys it also keeps an eye on the development of kidney disease through time.

When is a kidney biopsy suggested by the doctor?

There are a few symptoms and conditions for which your doctor may suggest a biopsy to evaluate certain important factors related to the condition. Some of these conditions are:

  • If you have gone through a kidney replacement surgery
  • Glomerulonephritis or nephrotic syndrome
  • Presence of blood in the urine
  • Idiopathic kidney related issue
  • Very abnormal outcome of kidney related tests

Types of kidney biopsy

The dogmatic process of kidney biopsy is to examine the sample tissue taken from the affected kidney. In most cases, the area through with the insertion of a tool to collect the sample is your back. However, in some cases, this process is done from the lower belly area. There are two types of kidney biopsy:

Open kidney biopsy

In this type of test, the tool for removing the tissue is entered through a small incision which is stitched at the end of the process. For this process, you are given general anesthesia to make you unconscious for the process.

Percutaneous kidney biopsy

In this type of kidney biopsy, local anesthesia is given to numb the specific region of your body in order to insert a very thin needle through that area of your body. This needle is used to take out the sample tissue from your kidney. To guide the needle in your body doctors usually use the assistance of an imaging test.

What should you keep in mind for the preparation of kidney biopsy?

The first and foremost this you should do before going through a kidney biopsy is to inform your doctor about all of your medications. This is because there are few medicines such as immuno- suppressers that reduce the efficiency of your body’s clotting agent. This is dangerous during the test because one can unstoppably bleed because of it. Your doctors will suggest you stop all the painkillers, blood thinners, and anti-inflammatory 2 weeks before the biopsy. It is necessary before the test that you are free from any kind of infection and to assure this your urine and blood test will be done. You will also be advised not to eat or drink one night before the procedure.

Some medications such as for hypertension should not be avoided to keep your blood pressure in check during the biopsy.

What to expect after a kidney biopsy?

After the procedure of this test is done, you will be put under observation in the recovery area for 2- 3 hours. In the observation, your capability to digest the fluids and pass the urine will be ensured. Other than that your vitals will also be examined there. After getting discharged from the recovery area, you will be advised to spend at least one night in complete rest at home.

You can return to your daily but healthy lifestyle after that day which will include walking, eating, driving, etc. However, it is important that you do not over-exhaust yourself and not lift anything heavy. Your post-recovery period will also depend upon the condition you have and the type of biopsy you have gone through.


If you are in regular consultation with an experienced doctor, your kidney biopsy will go smoothly and without any risks. However, it is necessary to have basic knowledge about this test in order to prepare well for it. A biopsy is a very specialized test to really specify the cause of your kidney disease. The need for an expert hand for this test is inevitable.

At Alfa Kidney care, expertise in the area of kidney-related tests is guaranteed to ensure the best treatment plan for you.