Richard E. Link, MD, PhD, presented “A Better Mousetrap: Minimally-Invasive Management of Symptomatic Caliceal Diverticular Stones in the Era of Robotic Surgery” virtually during the Innovations in Urologic Practice 2020 virtual conference in September 2020.

How to cite: Link, Richard E. “A Better Mousetrap: Minimally-Invasive Management of Symptomatic Caliceal Diverticular Stones in the Era of Robotic Surgery” September 26th, 2020. Accessed Jul 2021.


Richard E. Link, MD, PhD, Professor of Urology and the Carlton-Smith Endowed Chair in Urologic Education at the Baylor College of Medicine, discusses the pros and cons of different techniques for managing caliceal diverticular stones, a simple problem requiring a complex solution. The presentation aims to provide a framework for the identification and management of this condition since there are not enough high-quality studies to have a definitive strategy. Dr. Link discusses caliceal diverticulum incidence, etiology, and presentation, as well as the specific qualities of stones in caliceal diverticula, noting that stone formation is not caused by the presence of a caliceal diverticulum, but rather by the same metabolic anomalies experienced by other stone formers. He then dissects the different surgical options for treatment, including: extracorporeal shockwave lithotripsy (ESWL), which results in stone-free rates of ≤25% and should only be used in patients who cannot tolerate more effective therapy; ureteroscopic management, which is superior to ESWL but still has low success rates; and percutaneous management, which was the gold standard treatment before the era of robotic surgery, and results in a stone-free rate between 70 and 100%, although it can be a challenging surgery. Dr. Link also discusses laparoscopic diverticulectomy and robotic true partial nephrectomy, more aggressive approaches that may be needed if percutaneous management fails. He concludes with several case studies, emphasizing that treatments should be tailored to individual patients.

About the Innovations in Urologic Practice 2020 virtual conference:
Presented by co-chairs Mohit Khera, MD, MBA, MPH, and Michael Coburn, MD, FACS, the Innovations in Urologic Practice conference provides a detailed review and commentary on multiple genitourinary and urologic diseases. Among the featured oncological topics are bladder cancer and immunotherapies, as well as upper tract cancer management, prostate cancer, including state-of-the-art imaging, focal therapy, and MRI. Experts also discuss new tools and techniques for nephrectomy and treating advanced renal cell carcinoma. In terms of general urological approaches, the conference also includes pelvic reconstruction and trauma, men’s health topics like male infertility and sexual dysfunction, and ways to diagnose and treat infections in the urology patient. Dr. Crawford presented this talk virtually at this year’s conference.