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J Endourol. 2008 Oct;22(10):2373-5. doi: 10.1089/end.2008.9702.

IL-6 does not predict current urolithiasis in stone formers.

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  • 1Department of Urology, Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center, Los Angeles, California 90027, USA.



Interleukin-6 (IL-6), an inflammatory marker, has previously been found to be elevated in the urine of patients with urolithiasis. Oxalate and other stone precursors have been shown to increase IL-6 production in proximal tubular epithelial cells in vitro. We examined whether urinary IL-6 could be used as a screening test to determine current urolithiasis in individuals who are known to form urinary stones.


Thirty-five adult patients with current urolithiasis demonstrated on imaging were enrolled in the study. Exclusion criteria included disease known to elevate IL-6. Each patient provided a pre-treatment urine specimen and one month after proven to be stone-free an additional urine specimen was obtained. The urinary IL-6/creatinine ratio was determined for both specimens and compared.


Ten patients provided both specimens. The mean pre-operative urinary IL-6/creatinine ratio before the procedure was 1.63 pg/mL. The mean post procedure urinary IL-6/creatinine ratio after the patient was confirmed to be stone-free was 1.81 pg/mL. These were not significantly different (p=0.38). Preoperative urinary IL-6/creatinine ratio did not correlate to stone size (r=0.15) and no correlation was seen between time from treatment and stone free IL-6/creatinine ratio (r=0.48).


Urinary IL-6 is not a good screening test for current urolithiasis in stone-forming individuals. It is elevated whether the stone is present or not.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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