Alpha-blockers aid in passage of kidney stones (meta-analysis)

Meta-analysis: alpha blockers effective for kidney stones

Clinical Question:
In patients with kidney stones (ureteric calculi), is treatment
with an alpha blocker effective in improving passage rate and decreasing

Bottom Line:
Although a recent large study found no benefit to alpha blocker treatment (Lancet 2015;386:341-49), this meta-analysis of 55 studies found a benefit to using alpha blockers to increase the likelihood of stone passage, decrease surgical intervention, and decrease episodes of pain. These findings support European and US guidelines that recommend
their use. Patients with larger (at least 5 mm) stones are more likely to benefit. (LOE = 1a-)

Hollingsworth JM, Canales BK, Rogers MA, et al. Alpha blockers for treatment of ureteric stones: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ 2016;355:i6112.


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