A simple method for quantitating the propensity for calcium oxalate crystallization in urine.

C. L. Wabner, C. Y. Pak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


To assess the propensity for spontaneous crystallization of calcium oxalate in urine, the permissible increment in oxalate is calculated. The previous method required visual observation of crystallization with the addition of oxalate, this warranted the need for a large volume of urine and a sacrifice in accuracy in defining differences between small incremental changes of added oxalate. Therefore, this method has been miniaturized and spontaneous crystallization is detected from the depletion of radioactive oxalate. The new "micro" method demonstrated a marked decrease (p < 0.001) in the permissible increment in oxalate in urine of stone formers versus normal subjects. Moreover, crystallization inhibitors added to urine, in vitro (heparin or diphosphonate) or in vivo (potassium citrate administration), substantially increased the permissible increment in oxalate. Thus, the "micro" method has proven reliable and accurate in discriminating stone forming from control urine and in distinguishing changes of inhibitory activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)255-259
Number of pages5
JournalThe Journal of lithotripsy & stone disease
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1991


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