The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide
Diagnostic Tests - Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)
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How do I prepare for the test?

  • Tell your doctor before the test if you have ever had an allergic reaction to x-ray dye (IV contrast dye). Also let your doctor know if you could be pregnant. If you have diabetes and take insulin, discuss this with your doctor before the test.

    On the day before your test, you should drink plenty of fluids. This will help prepare your kidneys for the job of clearing out the dye the next day.

    Your doctor will instruct you to eat a special diet the night before the test, so that you have less solid stool in your large intestine. (Large amounts of stool in the intestine can make it harder to interpret your x-rays.) Typical instructions might include using a laxative in the afternoon before your test and limiting your dinner the night before to clear liquids such as broth and juice.

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