kidney stone

Kidney Stone Program

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

Patients who do not have a urologist, call: 857-238-3838


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

About this Program

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)

Conditions & Diseases

  • Kidney Stones

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


  • Eisner, Brian Howard, MD


    Accepting New Patients

    Clinical Interests
    • Kidney stone disease
    • Bladder stones
    • Endourology
    • Kidney stone surgery
    • Kidney stone prevention
    • Shock wave lithotripsy
    • Ureteroscopy
    • Percutaneous nephrolithotomy
    • Ureteropelvic junction obstruction
    • Laparoscopic / Minimally invasive surgery
    Board Certifications
    • Urology, American Board of Urology
    • Boston: Urology Associates


  • Dusting v. Basketing: Strategies for Disintegrating Renal Stones - 10/12/2016, Clinical

    Dusting, a new protocol for treating kidney stones using recent laser technologies, has proven to deliver successful patient outcomes equal to those of traditional basketing, according to a study by the Endourology Disease Group for Excellence.

  • Doctor Discusses How to Prevent Kidney Stones - 12/28/2012, Mass General

    Is there any hope in preventing kidney stones? Dianne Sacco, MD, sheds some light on the condition and offers prevention tips. One of them for the New Year is staying and/or getting into good physical shape.

  • Doctors Take Aim At Epidemic Kidney Stones With Lasers - 9/10/2012, Mass General

    Learn how Massachusetts General Hospital doctors are treating kidney stones, one of the most painful and common disorders of the urinary tract.

  • MGH Urology celebrates 100 years - 6/18/2010, Mass General

    MGH Hotline 06.18.10 On the eve of the MGH bicentennial, one MGH department proudly celebrates its centennial.


Contact Us

Kidney Stone Program at the Department of Urology

  • Near Public Transit
  • Accessible
  • Phone: Contact by doctor

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

Dr. Dianne Sacco

Dr. Brian Eisner

Referral guidelines (PDF)

Patients who do not have a urologist, call: 857-238-3838

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