Biological and Geochemical Studies of Urinary Tract Stones in Lorestan Province

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Environment, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran

2 Department of Geology, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran


Mineralogy studies can help understand the interactions of geographical, environmental, and geological factors. Considering frequent occurrence of urinary tract stones in the south and west of Iran, the present paper examines trace elements, like heavy metals, in 53 urine stone samples collected from patients in Lorestan Province. It investigates the mineralogy of the stones, using X-ray diffraction. The samples are then classified into five mineral groups (calcium oxalate, urate, cysteine, calcium oxalate-urate, and calcium oxalate/phosphate). Results from this analysis are confirmed by SEM images, showing the crystalline form of the mineral phases. The microscopic studies show that only the mineral group of calcium oxalate (whewellite) could be detected in thin sections, prepared from urinary tract stone samples. The main and trace elements in each group are determined through ICP-MS method with the results showing that calcium is the most abundant substance in urinary tract stones, compared to other elements. This is caused by the role of calcium in most basic functions of cell metabolism. The correlation between magnesium and strontium is 0.64, originated from the placement of high amounts of strontium in calcium oxalate minerals. The positive correlation between sodium and calcium also indicates that sodium is replaced by calcium due to the similarity of the ionic radius in the crystal structure. Results from this study can help us find the causes behind the frequent occurrence of urinary tract stones in Lorestan Province.


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