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Kidney Stone Program

The Kidney Stone Program at Massachusetts General Hospital specializes in the innovative treatment and prevention of kidney stones, managing care for more patients with the disorder than any other hospital in Massachusetts.

Kidney Stone Specialists

Dianne Sacco, MD
Phone: 617-726-3760

Brian Eisner, MD
Phone: 617-726-3512

Stephen Dretler, MD
Phone: 617-726-3512

Urologists Specializing in Treating & Preventing Kidney Stones

At most hospitals, kidney stone are treated by general urologists. In our program, however, patients see experienced, board-certified specialists whose sole focus is treating and preventing kidney stones.

We care for hundreds of patients with kidney stones every year, so our physicians understand the full range of symptoms. Using this knowledge, they prescribe the most effective methods of treatment and prevention.

What to Expect

Patient care begins with a thorough evaluation of kidney stone size and factors such as lifestyle, medical history and genetic background. With this information, our specialists make precise diagnoses and develop treatment plans to address the patient's specific symptoms and causes.

Most patients are treated as outpatients because many of the advanced therapies we prescribe are noninvasive or minimally invasive. This can help patients avoid a hospital stay and recover more quickly.

Leaders in Minimally Invasive Treatments

Mass General is one of the few hospitals in New England that has two of the most advanced stone removal technologies onsite: an externally applied shockwave therapy system and laser technology (lithotripsy) used to fragment stones. Because the most advanced equipment is available at the hospital, patients rarely have to wait for minimally invasive stone removal, sparing them the prolonged pain and discomfort of a temporary stent.

To treat kidney stones and associated urological problems, we use the most sophisticated techniques and technologies available. In addition to shockwave therapy and lithotripsy, we offer treatments such as:

  • Minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery
  • Intestinal interposition for patients with ureteral dysfunction or obstruction
  • Advanced percutaneous methods

In many cases, our physicians recommend nonoperative care, such as medication or dietary changes. When patients pass stones without operative intervention, they can recover more quickly, forego many procedures and avoid potential risks such as infection.

Learn more about minimally invasive surgery in the Department of Urology

Kidney Stone Specialists

Dianne Sacco, MD
Phone: 617-726-3760

Brian Eisner, MD
Phone: 617-726-3512

Stephen Dretler, MD
Phone: 617-726-3512

Recognized Experts in Kidney Stone Diagnosis & Treatment

We regularly receive referrals from primary care physicians and other urologists whose patients have had unsuccessful treatments and/or suffer from conditions that are difficult to treat. Patients in our program receive care from an accomplished kidney stone specialist.

Comprehensive Care & Prevention

Our urologists don’t just specialize in treating kidney stones. They also understand how the condition relates to the patient's overall health.

Stones may be symptomatic of other potentially serious health problems. As a result, our specialists take a multidisciplinary approach, targeting the root cause and collaborating with specialists in other clinical disciplines to address the patient's total well-being.

We also work closely with the patient to prevent the condition from reoccurring. Our team includes physicians and clinical practitioners who are experts in prevention, including:

  • nephrologists
  • endocrinologists
  • dietitians

Often associated with diabetes, obesity and other metabolic disorders, stones in some people can be avoided through exercise, diet and other lifestyle changes. At our service, we bring in the right professionals to ensure each patient stays healthy and enjoys the best possible quality of life.

A Site of Groundbreaking Kidney Stone Research

Our physicians are dedicated to developing new techniques, medications and instruments to improve patient outcomes. Instruments used throughout the world for stone stabilization and extraction were pioneered at Mass General, including the first laser treatment for stones and the "backstop" and "stone cone" devices, which prevent stone migration during treatment.

Our specialists are internationally renowned for contributions to the field and have written dozens of articles for prestigious publications, such as The Journal of Urology and The Journal of Endourology. Our ongoing research includes studies in:

  • Laser plasma monitoring for laser lithotripsy
  • Stone fragility
  • Urinary markers for kidney stones
  • Novel prostheses and surgical instruments
  • Effect of extracorporeal shockwaves on urinary calculi (kidney and bladder stones)

Kidney Stones

A kidney stone is a solid piece of material that forms from crystallization of excreted substances in the urine.

The following related clinical trials and research studies are currently seeking participants at Massachusetts General Hospital. Search for clinical trials and studies in another area of interest.

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Kidney Stone Program

Phone: Contact by doctor


All patient information is confidential, and we insure your privacy at all times.

Dr. Dianne Sacco
617-726-3760

Dr. Brian Eisner
617-726-3512

Dr. Stephen Dretler
617-726-3512