Purpose: Burst wave lithotripsy (BWL) is a transcutaneous technique with potential to safely and effectively fragment renal stones. Preclinical investigations of BWL require the assessment of potential renal injury. This study evaluates the capabilities of real-time ultrasound and MRI to detect and evaluate BWL injury that was induced in porcine kidneys.
Materials and methods: Ten kidneys from five female farm pigs were treated with either a 170 or 335 kHz BWL transducer using variable treatment parameters and monitored in real-time with ultrasound. Eight kidneys were perfusion fixed and scanned with a 3-Tesla MRI scanner (T1-weighted, T2-weighted, and susceptibility-weighted imaging), followed by processing via an established histomorphometric technique for injury quantification. In addition, two kidneys were separately evaluated for histologic characterization of injury quality.
Results: Observed B-mode hyperechoes on ultrasound consistent with cavitation predicted the presence of BWL-induced renal injury with a sensitivity and specificity of 100% in comparison to the histomorphometric technique. Similarly, MRI detected renal injury with a sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 100% and was able to identify the scale of lesion volumes. The injuries purposefully generated with BWL were histologically similar to those formed by shock wave lithotripsy.
Conclusions: BWL-induced renal injury can be detected with a high degree of sensitivity and specificity by real-time ultrasound and post-treatment ex vivo MRI. No injury occurred in this study without cavitation detected on ultrasound. Such capabilities for injury detection and lesion volume quantification on MRI can be used for preclinical testing of BWL.
Keywords: burst wave lithotripsy; extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy; nephrolithiasis; renal injury.