Date of Paper/Work


Type of Paper/Work

Scholarly project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Nursing




Angelynn Grabau


Objective: The goal of this literature review was to examine the efficacy of prophylactic antimicrobial therapy in children with hydronephrosis.

Methods: Research articles from 2005-2011 were reviewed to identify primary studies on children with documented hydronephrosis. A total of 20 articles met these criteria, however only 10 of these articles were used in this review, focusing specifically on studies, which examined the need for treatment with prophylactic antimicrobial therapy for children with hydronephrosis, or looked at antibiotic resistance patterns in children receiving prophylactic treatment for hydronephrosis.

Results: The literature review revealed conflicting data about the efficacy of prophylactic antimicrobial therapy in preventing infection in children with hydronephrosis. A majority of the studies found that the risk for antibiotic resistance outweighed potential kidney damage and concluded that children with hydronephrosis should be placed on prophylactic antibiotic therapy. However, others concluded that the potential for antibiotic resistance places the child at a higher risk due to the inability to combat infections with the appropriate antibiotics.

Conclusion: Current literature supports the concern about the impact of prophylactic antimicrobial therapy in children but yet, there is not enough evidence-based research to change the current treatment method used for children with hydronephrosis. Recommendations point to the best treatment for children with hydronephrosis should be to manage each case individually based on the severity of the renal impairment. The various grades of hydronephrosis and the underlying condition should be treated as separate conditions because ultimately they have a different outcome.