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Ureteral Stones

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Aug 31, 2022.

A ureteral stone forms in the kidney and moves down the ureter and gets stuck there. The ureter is the tube that takes urine from the kidney to the bladder. Stones can form in the urinary system when your urine has high levels of minerals and salts. Urinary stones can be made of uric acid, calcium, phosphate, or oxalate crystals.

Kidney, Ureters, Bladder


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is a small tube placed in your vein that is used to give you medicine or liquids.


  • Alpha blockers may be given to help your ureteral stones pass.
  • Antinausea medicine calms your stomach and prevents vomiting.
  • NSAIDs help decrease swelling and pain.
  • Prescription pain medicine may be given to decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you ask for more medicine.


  • Urine tests may show if you have blood in your urine. They may also show high amounts of the substances that form stones, such as uric acid.
  • Blood tests show how well your kidneys are working. They may also be used to check the levels of calcium or uric acid in your blood.
  • An x-ray or CT scan of your kidneys, ureters, and bladder may be done. You may be given contrast liquid to help these show up better in the pictures. You may need to have more than one x-ray. Tell the healthcare provider if you have ever had an allergic reaction to contrast liquid.


You may need any of the following if your ureteral stones are too large to pass or do not pass on their own:

  • Lithotripsy is a procedure that uses shock waves to break up the stones. Pieces of the stones can then pass in your urine.
  • Ureteroscopic kidney stone removal is a procedure to remove your ureteral stone.
  • Surgery may be needed to remove your ureteral stone if other procedures do not work.

Treatment options

The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.


Ureteral stones can cause an infection. Ureteral stones can also block the flow of urine and lead to kidney damage or failure. Once you have had urinary stones, you are at higher risk of getting them again.


You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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