Advances in Lasers for the Treatment of Stones-a Systematic Review

Curr Urol Rep. 2018 May 17;19(6):45. doi: 10.1007/s11934-018-0807-y.


Purpose of review: Laser lithotripsy is increasingly used worldwide and is a continuously evolving field with new and extensive research being published every year.

Recent findings: Variable pulse length Ho:YAG lithotripters allow new lithotripsy parameters to be manipulated, and there is an effort to integrate new technologies into lithotripters. Pulsed thulium lasers seem to be a viable alternative to holmium lasers. The performance of similar laser fibers varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Special laser fibers and "cleaving only" fiber tip preparation can be beneficial for the lithotripsy procedure. Different laser settings and the surgical technique employed can have significant impact on the success of laser lithotripsy. When safely done, complications of laser lithotripsy are rare and concern the endoscopic nature of procedure, not the technology itself, making laser lithotripsy one of the safest tools in urology. Laser lithotripsy has had several new developments and more insight has been gained in recent years with many more advances expected in the future.

Keywords: Endourology; Laser lithotripsy; Pulsed thulium lasers.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Lasers, Solid-State / therapeutic use
  • Lithotripsy, Laser / methods*
  • Urinary Calculi / therapy*