Children's Hospital Colorado

Urology Research at the Department of Pediatric Urology

Researchers in the Department of Pediatric Urology work to improve the treatment and care for patients with urologic conditions. Our team’s expertise in basic, translational, clinical outcomes and quality improvement research are aimed at understanding urologic conditions present at birth and how best to treat them. Research drives our mission to minimize interventions and maximize outcomes for our young patients.

Adrian Francisco (right) and his kidney donor, Jaime Bailey (left). After 10 years on dialysis, Adrian is adapting to full-time school for the first time.
Research article

Adrian Francisco had his first kidney transplant at age 4, but complications left him back on dialysis and highly sensitized to future transplant. Ten years later, a process called desensitization was his only option.

Research summary
This image show Dr. Duncan Wilcox in exam room with a patient and her parent.
Research summary

Department of Pediatric Urology research advancements

Some of our research areas include bladder development, urologic oncology, prenatal imaging and congenital hydronephrosis.

"Parents feel a weight in making the right decision for their child. Even though we push for shared decision-making, many parents just want the physician to make the decision."

Vijaya Vemulakonda, MD

Pediatric Urologist

Learn about Dr. Vemulakonda’s research

What our research means for kids

While many childhood urological conditions are not life-threatening, all of them make a very real and often long-term impact on quality of life. Our research focuses on identifying and implementing new and better treatment practices — more effective, less invasive — with the goal of making life easier for kids, adolescents and even adults with urological conditions, here and around the nation. Read about just a few of our efforts below.

  • Pediatric urologic surgeon Vijaya Vemulakonda, MD, works with researchers at Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego and Texas Children's Hospital to study treatments for infants diagnosed with hydronephrosis before birth. The research looks at how those variations in treatment impact kidney function in children with kidney obstruction. The goal is to develop guidelines for surgical testing and treatment to improve the long-term outcomes of these patients.
  • Pediatric urologic oncologist Nicholas Cost, MD, is currently investigating the impact that urologic cancers (kidney, adrenal, bladder, testicular) have on kids and how they can best be treated to maximize cure, but minimize side effects. He works with the Children’s Oncology Group to offer the latest treatments and collaborate on research. In addition, the Pediatric Urologic Oncology Program has its own ongoing local investigation in the lab and the clinic that is studying the impact of chemotherapy on bladder function in children.
  • In collaboration with the Department of Pediatric Radiology and the Society for Fetal Urology, pediatric urological surgeon Jeffrey Campbell, MD, is working to refine prenatal imaging tests to identify urinary and genital organ irregularities at and before birth.
  • In collaboration with Anna Malykhina, MD, at the University of Colorado, Duncan Wilcox, MD, and Nao Iguchi, MD, are studying the effect of partial bladder outlet obstruction to assess signs of the obstruction. By studying hypoxia pathways, they hope to find new types of treatment. In addition, they are studying the interaction between bladder and bowel nerve function and its possible effect on children with dysfunctional elimination syndrome.

Learn more about the Department of Pediatric Urology.

Contact us

720-777-3926
urology.urology@childrenscolorado.org

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