Congenital obstruction of the urinary tract can result in renal insufficiency and renal failure, permanent renal injury, oliguria or anuria, skeletal and soft tissue malformation, and pulmonary hypoplasia.

Urinary tract dilatation is suggestive of, but not equivalent to, obstruction.

Many of these conditions now present antenatally due to screening with ultrasonographic imaging. The role of antenatal intervention based on such findings remains controversial.

In many cases of congenital urinary tract dilatation, conservative management via observation and serial imaging is adequate, as the dilatation may be stable or may diminish over time.

Intervention is usually reserved for cases in which ongoing renal injury is believed to be occurring.