At the International Kidney Stone Institute, our goal is nothing less than the cure.

The International Kidney Stone Institute (IKSI) is a charitable organization dedicated to supporting research and education for the detection, management and prevention of kidney stone disease.

Affiliated with IU Health Methodist Hospital and Indiana University School of Medicine, IKSI is a center for excellence in kidney stone disease and independent evaluation of the safety and effectiveness of stone disease treatments.

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Kidney Stone Library

Common Stone Types


Cystine stones account for only one percent of all kidney stones. They form in individuals with a rare inherited metabolic disorder that causes high levels of cystine in the urine. These stones can occur in childhood.

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Nearly 80 percent of all kidney stones are composed of calcium and oxalate. Stones composed of calcium and phosphate are also common. At least half of the people with calcium stones have abnormally high levels of calcium in the urine, a condition called hypercalciuria. This condition can occur due to increased absorption of dietary calcium in the intestine, loss of calcium from bones, or problems with how the kidneys normally control the amount of calcium in the urine. Dietary, metabolic...

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Struvite stones are composed of mixtures of magnesium, ammonium, phosphate and calcium carbonate phosphate crystals. These stones develop as a consequence of recurrent or chronic urinary tract infections. Struvite stones can grow very large, forming a mineral cast (staghorn stone) that fills the urine collection space.

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Uric acid is produced when the body metabolizes protein. Humans have a level of uric acid that is 10 times greater than other mammals. Urine becomes saturated with uric acid when the pH drops below 5.5. Individuals are more prone to develop uric acid stones when they ingest large amounts of protein, such as that found in red meat or poultry. Uric acid stones are also found more commonly in those individuals who have received chemotherapy or suffer from gout. Rarely, uric acid stones...

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Kidney stones can occur as a result of medication therapy. An example is the occurrence of indinavir stones in patients treated with this medication for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Rarely, stones have been discovered among individuals who ingest large quantities of cough medicine containing guaifenesin or ephedrine. More recently, topirimate or Topamax, a medication used to treat patients who suffer from seizures or migraine headaches, has been implicated in stone formation....

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