Comparison of Doppler US and CT angiography for evaluation of renal artery stenosis

Acad Radiol. 1998 Aug;5(8):524-32. doi: 10.1016/s1076-6332(98)80203-1.


Rationale and objectives: The authors compared Doppler ultrasound (US) with computed tomographic (CT) angiography in the evaluation of stenosis of the main renal artery.

Materials and methods: Fifty-six patients who had undergone conventional angiography of the renal arteries participated in a prospective comparison of Doppler US (45 patients) and CT angiography (52 patients). US evaluation included both the main renal artery and segmental renal arteries.

Results: There were 27 main renal arteries with at least 50% stenosis in 20 patients. In 36 patients, there was no significant stenosis. All cases of main renal artery stenosis detected with Doppler US of the segmental arteries were also identified with Doppler US of the main renal artery. The by-artery sensitivity (63%) of US of the main renal artery was greater than that (33%) of US of the segmental arteries. CT angiography was more sensitive (96%) than Doppler US (63%) in the detection of stenosis, but the specificity of CT (88%) was similar to that of US (89%). The difference in the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) between CT (AUC = 0.94) and US (AUC = 0.82) was statistically significant (P = .038).

Conclusion: Doppler US of the main renal artery is more sensitive than Doppler US of segmental arteries in the detection of stenosis. CT angiography is more accurate than Doppler US in the evaluation of renal artery stenosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Angiography
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • ROC Curve
  • Renal Artery / diagnostic imaging
  • Renal Artery Obstruction / diagnostic imaging*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed*
  • Ultrasonography, Doppler*