Trends in urological stone disease - Abstract

Oxford Stone Group, Department of Urology, Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences, The Churchill Hospital, Oxford.


Study Type - Therapy (case series) Level of Evidence 4.

What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? Urolithiasis is a major clinical and economic burden for health care systems. International epidemiological data suggest that the incidence and prevalence of stone disease is increasing. This study demonstrates that the number of diagnoses and procedures relating to kidney stone disease has increased significantly in the last 10 years in the UK. Management of stone disease comprises a significant and increasing proportion of urological practice in the UK, which has implications for work force planning, training, service delivery and research in this field.

To summarize the changes in prevalence and treatment of upper urinary tract stone disease in the UK over the last 10 years.

Data from the Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) website ( were extracted, summarized and presented.

The number of upper urinary tract stone hospital episodes increased by 63% to 83 050 in the 10-year period. The use of shock wave lithotripsy (SWL) for treating all upper tract stones increased from 14 491 cases in 2000-2001 to 22 402 cases in 2010 (a 55% increase) with a 69% increase in lithotripsy for renal stones.  There was a 127% increase in the number of ureteroscopic stone treatments from 6 283 to 14 242 cases over the 10-year period with a 49% increase from 2007/2008 to 2009/2010.  There was a decline in open surgery for upper tract stones from 278 cases in 2000/2001 to 47 cases in 2009/2010 (an 83% reduction). Treatment for stone disease has increased substantially in comparison with other urological activity. In 2009/2010, SWL was performed almost as frequently as transurethral resection of the prostate or transurethral resection of bladder tumour, ureteroscopy for stones was performed more frequently than nephrectomy, radical prostatectomy and cystectomy combined, and percutaneous nephrolithotomy was performed more frequently than cystectomy.

The present study highlights the increase in prevalence and treatment of stone disease in the UK over the last 10 years.  If this trend continues it has important implications for workforce planning, training, service delivery and research in the field of urolithiasis.

Written by:
Turney BW, Reynard JM, Noble JG, Keoghane SR.   Are you the author?

Reference: BJU Int. 2011 Aug 26. Epub ahead of print.
doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2011.10495.x

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 21883851 Stone Disease Section