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December 19, 1966

The Management of Ureteral Stones

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Urology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis.

JAMA. 1966;198(12):1270-1272. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03110250084024

The earliest specimen of vesical calculus was discovered by Prof Elliot Smith1 in the grave of a predynastic and prehistoric Egyptian boy of 15 or 16. He considered it to have been several centuries prior to Mena, the first king of Egypt, who reigned somewhere between the years 4800 and 4500 BC. The calculus must, therefore, be about 7,000 years old at the present time. It rests in the Hunterian Museum, Royal College of Surgeons, England.

Hippocrates2 (460-370 BC) recognized both renal and vesical calculus and described symptoms of each. He was a daring surgeon but he considered wounds of the bladder to be mortal and forbade his followers to operate for a stone in the bladder. You may recall that he makes mention of this in his famous oath, "Neither will I cut them that have stone, but will leave this operation to those who are accustomed