Objective: To evaluate the gravity effect of radiographic anatomic features on the stone clearance following satisfactory fragmentation of lower pole stones.
Material and Methods: Thirty three patients with mean age 39.47+12.62 years, who underwent SWL due to lower pole calculi between October 2005 and Augusts 2009 were enrolled. The mean calculi load was 144.94+105.16 mm². Three angles on excretory urography were measured; the inner angle between the axis of the lower pole infundibular and ureteropelvic axis (angle I= 67.00+8.47), inner angle between lower pole infundibular axis and main axis of pelvis-ureteropelvic junction point (angle II=108.58+12.68) and inner angle between lower pole infundibular axis and perpendicular line (angle III=46.58+8.67). The mean number of sessions was 3.59+1.54 and the mean number of shock waves was 9346.52+4745. Hydronephrosis was presented in 12 patients.
Results: The over all success rate was %75.75. Only angle I and angle II, had significant effect on stone clearance. While angle III, sessions number, shock waves number and stone burden, presence of hydronephrosis ,sex and age had not significant influence on stone clearance.
Conclusions: Radiographic anatomic features have significant role in determining the stone-free rate following satisfactory fragmentation. However angle III which reflect the gravity effect on the retention of the fragments in lower pole had not significant effect. Therefore gravity effect is not enough to justify the significant influence of the radiographic anatomic features on the stone clearance and fragments retention after SWL. Further mechanisms should be exist which may play role in retention of the fragments after SWL.