Kidney Stone Program Research and Innovation

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Boston Children’s Hospital researchers are studying the rise in overall exposure to medical radiation, as well as the increase in the use of computed tomography (CT) scans on kids coming to hospitals with kidney stones (urolithiasis).

In one study, clinicians have found that in most cases ultrasound is as accurate as CT scan, without any radiation. For cases when CT scans are still needed, Boston Children’s radiologists have led the way in pioneering low-radiation CT scan techniques that reduce radiation exposure dramatically.

In another study, our researchers observed how much x-ray imaging was being used in the operating room during surgery to treat kidney stone. It was found that the radiation exposure during these cases was significant. In response, clinicians in the Kidney Stone Center developed a checklist that reduced radiation exposure levels during these procedures by up to 80%.

Based on these studies, clinicians advocate ultrasound for diagnosis, and they’ve instituted new protocols at the hospital to reduce radiation exposure. Read more here

Research continues to look at factors that contribute to formation of kidney stones in children, including medications and diet, and the value of certain common tests performed in children with kidney stones. The COCONUT study (Children’s Observational Cohort of Nephrolithiasis/Urolithiasis), a large multi-center long-term study, will launch in 2013 and look at the causes of recurrent stones in children. 

To learn more about this study or any of our research please Contact Us

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The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO
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