Dissolution of cholesterol gallstones: Comparison of solvents

Lester L. Lee, John P McGahan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Various gallstone solvents are compared to evaluate their efficacy. Cholesterol gallstones from 5 patients were weight matched and incubated in 5 different solutions at 37° C. These solutions consisted of methyl-tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), 90% mono-octanoin (MO), absolute alcohol, normal saline, and water. Absolute alcohol and MTBE were found to induce faster stone dissolution than the mono-octanoin derivative. Concentrations of alcohol below 80%, normal saline, and water were not effective in dissolving stones. Newer agents such as MTBE may prove valuable in dissolution of stones in the human gallbladder or bile ducts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-171
Number of pages3
JournalGastrointestinal Radiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1986


  • Biliary tract, calculi
  • Gallstones, effect of solvents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology


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