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Starinsky Ruth; Barr, Joseph; Lushkov, Gilli; Segal, Michael; Manor, Anna; Golik, Ahuva
Journal of Computer Assisted Tomography: March-April 1995
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Patients treated with intravenous antibiotics were seen to have increased attenuation of the renal collecting system on CT scan of the abdomen. To detect whether this was related to certain antibiotics, we undertook a prospective study on patients being treated for sepsis while receiving intravenous antibiotics. In addition, we also tested antibiotics administered to rabbits.

Materials and Methods

Fourteen patients were tested with cefazolin, gentamicin, cefotaxime, vancomycin, amoxicillin and clavulanic acid (Augmenting and metronidazole. Ten groups of rabbits received these drugs by intravenous injection. Computed tomography scan of the kidneys was performed prior to and 2 h after intravenous injection of antibiotics. Fourteen patients who underwent CT scan of the abdomen and were treated by intravenous antibiotics were scanned without contrast agent injection.


According to our results, cefazolin, cefotaxime, and gentamicin seemed to be the most potent antibiotics in inducing increased attenuation of the collecting system. This effect was synergistic when a combination of drugs was used.


The elucidation of the potential increase in attenuation of the collecting system by antibiotics in normally functioning kidneys should help to eliminate confusion with other pathologies such as medullary sponge kidney.

Index Terms

Antibiotics—Kidneys—Computed tomography.

© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.