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Objective: To evaluate the effi cacy and safety of Holmium: YAG laser lithotripsy for the treatment of impacted ureteral stones.
Patients and Methods: From January 2000 to January 2007, 150 patients (105 males and 45
females) with impacted ureteral stones were treated at the Urology Department of the Assiut University Hospital, Assiut, Egypt. Their mean age was 36 years (range 20 to 66 years). The mean duration of stone impaction was 4.6 months. The patients were managed via the retrograde endoscopic approach using small caliber (6.9 F rigid and 7.5 F fl exible) ureteroscopes and the Holmium:YAG laser lithotriptor.
Results: Out of 150 ureteral stones, 144 (96%) were completely fragmented with a single
endoscopic procedure. Proximal stone migration occurred in two cases, and the stones were
treated by extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL). Intra-operative ureteral perforation occurred in 4 cases and was managed by open surgical treatment. Endoscopic observation revealed infl ammatory polyps at the site of impaction in 75 patients and a stricture adjacent to the stone in 20 cases.
Conclusion: Holmium: YAG laser lithotripsy may be considered an effective fi rst-line therapy for chronically impacted ureteral stones, which are frequently associated with chronic infl ammation, polyps and strictures. It is quite safe and it avoids the futile repetition of ESWL and problems caused by a prolonged passage of stone fragments.
Keywords: Ureteroscopy, holmium laser, impacted ureteral stone
African Journal of Urology Vol. 13 (4) 2007: pp. 262-266