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VCUG by Fluoroscopy

(757) 668-7000

VCUG by Fluoroscopy


A VCUG (Voiding Cystourethrogram) is a special kind of x-ray that shows urine flow.


The kidneys filter waste (urine) from the body. The urine flows down the ureters (small tubes) from the kidneys to the bladder. The bladder stores urine. When it is time for the bladder to empty, the sphincter (muscle) relaxes and the bladder squeezes the urine out. Once the bladder is empty, the sphincter tightens; the bladder relaxes and starts to refill. The urethra is the tube the urine flows through from the bladder to the outside of the body.

A VCUG shows what the inside of your child’s bladder and urethra look like. It also shows any reflux (reverse flow) of urine and how well the bladder empties. Urine should flow down from the kidneys to the bladder. With reflux, urine flow from the bladder backs up into the ureters while urine is also flowing out of bladder into the urethra.


There is no special preparation needed. Your child may eat and drink as normal before the test.

The test will be done in the Radiology Department, which is located on the first floor of Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters. Please arrive on time.


The radiologist or technologist will come into the room to talk to your child. Your child will be placed in a position so the urethra can be seen. We may need to use safety straps to prevent your child from falling off the table. The area will be washed and a small tube will be placed into the bladder through the urethra. This might feel uncomfortable. The doctor or nurse will use a bottle or syringe of liquid (contrast) to fill the bladder. Pictures will be taken while the bladder fills and empties. The tube is taken out while the bladder empties.

The test usually takes 15 to 30 minutes, but it might take longer depending on how many pictures the doctor wants. After all the pictures have been taken you and your child may go home.


  • Your child may have discomfort after the test when he/she passes urine. Warm baths may be helpful.
  • Your child will need to drink lots of water for one day.


Please call your child’s doctor for a follow-up appointment or if you have any questions. Please feel free to contact the Radiology Department between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at 668-7250.

Disclaimer:This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.

Reviewed: 01/2020

(757) 668-7000