The incidence of nephrolithiasis in patients with spinal neural tube defects

Ganesh V. Raj, Robert T. Bennett, Glenn M. Preminger, Lowell R. King, John S. Wiener

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Purpose: Bladder stones are common in patients with spinal neural tube defects but there are little data on the incidence of renal calculi in this population. We examined the incidence, nature and risk factors of nephrolithiasis in our clinic population of patients with neural tube defects. Materials and Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the charts and radiological studies of 327 patients followed at our neural tube defects clinic with routine radiological imaging of the urinary tract. Additional confirmatory studies were performed when stones were noted. Results: Renal calculi were identified in 20 patients with neural tube defects (6.1%). The incidence of nephrolithiasis increased with age. Renal stones were noted in 19 patients (10.7%) 12 years old or older. Management of the stones in these patients resulted in overall 53% stone-free and 87% recurrence rates after intervention. Major risk factors for new and/or recurrent renal stone formation were bacteriuria in 95% of the cases, lower urinary tract reconstruction in 80%, pelvicalicectasis in 70%, vesicoureteral reflux in 65%, a thoracic level spinal defect in 60% and renal scarring in 55%. Conclusions: These data suggest that there is a higher incidence of nephrolithiasis in patients with neural tube defects than in the general population and the risk of stone recurrence is also elevated. Most patients with stones had undergone lower urinary tract reconstruction. Other risk factors were bacteriuria, pelvicalicectasis, vesicoureteral reflux and a thoracic level neural tube defect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1238-1242
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number3 II
StatePublished - Sep 1999


  • Calculi
  • Kidney
  • Neural tube defects
  • Risk factors
  • Spinal dysraphism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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