Purpose of review: Nephrolithiasis is a prominent public health issue. It imposes a substantial burden on human health and is a considerable financial expenditure for the nation. Numerous epidemiologic studies have shown a significant association between nephrolithiasis, obesity, hypertension and chronic kidney disease. The review highlights many of those emerging studies and sheds light on the importance of our recognition of kidney stones as a systemic illness.
Recent findings: Several cross-sectional retrospective studies have investigated the relationship between kidney stones and the metabolic syndrome. The various silent features of the metabolic syndrome, including type 2 diabetes, increased BMI, hypertension and dyslipidemia, are becoming progressively more recognized and independently associated with an increased risk of kidney stone formation.
Summary: Our further understanding of the underlying mechanisms in the connection between nephrolithiasis and the metabolic syndrome will stimulate the development of more effective preventive and therapeutic measures.