This study was designed to investigate whether the short-term extracorporeal shockwave lithotripsy (ESWL) exposure to kidney produces an oxidative stress and a change in some trace element levels in liver and diaphragm muscles of rats. Twelve male Wistar albino rats were divided randomly into two groups, each consisting of six rats. The animals in the first group did not receive any treatment and served as control group. The right-side kidneys of animals in group 2 were treated with two-thousand 18?kV shock waves while anesthetized with 50?mg kg-1 ketamine. The localization of the right kidney was achieved after contrast medium injection through a tail vein under fluoroscopy control. The animals were killed 72 h after the ESWL treatment, and liver and diaphragm muscles were harvested for the determination of tissue oxidative stress and trace element levels. Although the malondialdehyde level increased, superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase enzyme activities decreased in the livers and diaphragm muscles of ESWL-treated rats. Although glutathione level increased in liver, it decreased in diaphragm muscles of ESWL-treated animals. Fe, Mg and Mn levels decreased, and Cu and Pb levels increased in the livers of ESWL-treated animals. Fe and Cu levels increased, and Mg, Pb, Mn and Zn levels decreased in the diaphragm muscles of ESWL-treated animals. It also causes a decrease or increase in many mineral levels in liver and diaphragm muscles, which is an undesirable condition for the normal physiological function of tissues. Copyright (c) 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.