Tiopronin for kidney stones


Generic Name

How It Works

Tiopronin helps keep cystine dissolved in the urine, which makes cystine kidney stones less likely to form.

Why It Is Used

Tiopronin may be used to prevent kidney stones in people with high levels of cystine in their urine.

How Well It Works

Tiopronin may reduce cystine excretion and help keep new stones from forming.1

Side Effects

Side effects of tiopronin may include:

  • Yellow skin color (jaundice).
  • Kidney damage.
  • Rash.
  • Reduced production of blood cells in the bone marrow.
  • Joint pain.

See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems.)

What To Think About

Tiopronin is less likely to cause side effects than penicillamine, another medicine used to prevent cystine kidney stones.

People usually try other treatments to prevent kidney stones before using this medicine.

Some people may find it difficult to drink enough liquid while taking this medicine.

Complete the new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.



  1. Pietrow PK, Preminger GM (2007). Evaluation and medical management of urinary lithiasis. In AJ Wein, ed., Campbell-Walsh Urology, 9th ed., vol. 2, pp. 1393–1430. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier.

Last Updated: May 4, 2009

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