Objectives. To determine whether prenatal sonography and early detection and correction of ureteropelvic junction obstruction (UPJO) has changed the incidence of crossing vessels as the etiology of obstruction in older children presenting with symptomatic UPJO. Methods. We reviewed the medical records of all children and adolescents who underwent pyeloplasty for symptomatic UPJO between 1986 and 1999, during the era of widespread use of prenatal sonography. Operative notes were used to determine which patients had obstruction due to lower pole crossing vessels. Results. Thirty-eight patients were identified who underwent pyeloplasty for symptomatic UPJO. Lower pole vessels were identified in 22 (58%) of 38 patients (P <0.0001 compared with historical controls). All patients underwent dismembered pyeloplasty and remained asymptomatic after surgery, with renal scans demonstrating excellent drainage and preservation of function. Conclusions. Prenatal ultrasonography has increased the incidence of crossing vessels as the etiology of UPJO in young children and adolescents presenting with symptomatic UPJO compared with the historical incidence of 11% to 15%. This finding may impact treatment recommendations with respect to endourologic management of the obstruction in this patient population. Currently, we recommend open dismembered pyeloplasty for young children and adolescents presenting with symptomatic UPJO.
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