Cessation of Ureteral Colic Does Not Necessarily Mean that a Ureteral Stone Has Been Expelled

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Abstract

Purpose:

We evaluated whether cessation of renal colic is consistent with an expelled ureteral stone or whether imaging may be indicated even in the absence of symptoms.

Materials and Methods:

We performed a retrospective study of patients who presented to our institution with acute renal colic and ureteral stone, and were subsequently evaluated at a followup visit where they reported complete cessation of pain for at least 72 hours.

Results:

Study inclusion criteria were met by 52 patients, who reported no pain for at least 72 hours at the time of the followup visit. A persistent ureteral stone was demonstrated in 14 of the 52 patients (26%) although they denied any associated symptoms. Multivariate logistic regression did not show an association between stone size or location and the likelihood of passage in this cohort.

Conclusions:

Cessation of pain was associated with ureteral stone passage in almost 75% of this study cohort but 26% of patients still had persistent ureteral stones. We recommend routine followup imaging in all patients with ureteral stones to document stone passage and avoid the risks of silent ureteral obstruction.

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