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Several modalities of stone analysis are utilised in different laboratories. However, the treating clinician finds it hard to assess the initiation and progression of stone formation. The pathogenesis of calculogenesis still remains a mystery. The purpose of this paper is to assess the pathological mechanisms of stone nucleation and growth by observing the ultra microscopic morphology of the different layers of laminated stones; 130 fragments from 28 randomly selected laminated stones of more than 10-mm diameter were analysed. Wet chemical analysis of the stones was performed. Surface and cross-sectional morphology of the entire stones and the individual fragments was assessed using optical microscopy and images were recorded using ordinary camera. They were further analysed using FTIR for confirmation. By morphological analysis, whewellite, weddellite, uric acid, and phosphate were the main minerals identified. Mixtures of these minerals were also found. Concentric lamination, radial striation, frond formation, and amorphous pattern were the main cross-sectional morphologies obtained. The calculi analysed had differences in their outer and inner portions. This was more pronounced in stones containing predominantly whewellite and uric acid. Whewellite was the outer component in most mixed stones. Uric acid was more in the inner layers of mixed stones than the surface.


Y M Fazil Marickar, Luxmi Varma, Peter Koshy. Ultrastructural study of laminated urinary stone. Urological research. 2009 Oct;37(5):289-92

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PMID: 19657634

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