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Extracorporeal Shock-Wave Lithotripsy

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University of Florida College of Medicine; and the Veterans Administration Medical Center; Gainesville, Florida

Ann Intern Med. 1984;101(3):387-389. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-101-3-387
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Extracorporeal shock-wave lithotripsy is a technique for pulverizing urinary stones in vivo by focusing hydraulic shock waves on the stone (1-3). This innovative form of therapy is the by-product of a long-term research program by the Dornier System GmbH (Friedrichafen, Federal Republic of Germany) on the effect of shock waves. A stimulus for the initiation of this program was the contrecoup damage that occurred in gas-filled satellites when they were struck by micrometeorites. At a social gathering, a physician, who was the wife of one of the engineers working on the shock-wave project, suggested that shock waves could be used


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