Objective: To examine the effect of ureteral access sheath (UAS) on the expression of the pro-inflammatory mediators cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in the ureteral wall. Material and Methods: In 22 pigs an UAS was inserted and removed after 2 minutes on one side and 2 hours on the contralateral side. Postoperatively ureters were excised in vivo, and tissue samples from the distal (2 minutes/2 hours) and proximal ureter (2 minutes/2 hours) were snap-frozen before quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis of COX-2 and TNF-α. Five unmanipulated ureteral units from other pigs served as the control group. Results: Compared to controls COX-2 mRNA was significantly upregulated in all UAS treated ureteral groups. Similarly, TNF-α mRNA was upregulated in all groups except the 2-minute proximal ureteral group. Both COX-2 and TNF-α expression were significantly higher in the distal than in the proximal ureter in the UAS treated ureters. After UAS insertion for 2 minutes, expression levels in the distal ureter were increased 6.5- and 8-fold for COX-2 and TNF-α, respectively; and after 2 hours of UAS placement COX-2 and TNF-α mRNA expression levels were increased 9- and 9.5-fold, respectively. Conclusion: The pro-inflammatory mediators COX-2 and TNF-α were significantly upregulated in the ureteral wall by the influence of UAS. These findings may have implications for postoperative pain, drainage, and complications.