Background: Contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) can provide more improved images
of renal blood flow and much more information of both macro- and microcirculation of the
kidney as compared to Doppler US.
Objective: To investigate the usefulness of CEUS by analyzing differences in perfusion-related parameters
among the three chronic kidney disease (CKD) subgroups and the control group.
Methods: Thirty-eight patients with CKD and 21 controls who were age-matched (20−49 years)
were included. Included CKD patients were stratified into three groups according to their eGFR:
group I, eGFR ≥ 60 ml/min/1.73 m2 (GFR category I and II); group II, 30 ml/min/1.73 m2 ≤ eGFR
< 60 ml/min/1.73 m2 (GFR category III); and group III, eGFR < 30 ml/min/1.73 m2 (GFR category
IV and V). Comparisons with the controls (eGFR > 90 ml/min/1.73 m2) were performed. Real-time
and dynamic renal cortex imaging was performed using CEUS. Time-intensity curves and several
bolus model quantitative perfusion parameters were created using the VueBox® quantification software.
We compared the parameters among the CKD subgroups and between the CKD and control
Results: Eight patients were included in group I, 12 patients in group II, and 18 patients in group
III. Significant differences were noted in the wash-in and wash-out rates between the CKD and control
groups (p = 0.027 and p = 0.018, respectively), but not between those of the CKD subgroups.
There were no significant differences of other perfusion parameters among the CKD subgroups
and between the CKD and control groups.
Conclusion: A few perfusion related CEUS parameters (WiR and WoR) can be used as markers of
renal microvascular perfusion relating renal function. CEUS can effectively and quantitatively exhibit
the renal microvascular perfusion in patients with CKD as well as normal control participants.