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Kidney Stones Health Center

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Diabetes From Kidney Stone Blaster?

Nearly 4 Times Higher Diabetes Risk After Shock Wave Treatment for Kidney Stones

Treatment Options

There are different kinds of kidney stones -- and different treatment options.

"There are 101 ways to form a kidney stone," Krambeck says. "It all has to do with genetic makeup, diet, and lifestyle. Once a person forms a stone, he or she needs a complete metabolic evaluation to understand why. Then we can give medication to prevent a second stone."

Some kinds of kidney stones can be prevented with medication or proper diet. But when a stone can't be prevented or easily passed in the urine, treatment is necessary. The options:

  • Shock wave lithotripsy. No surgery is required, although some machines require general anesthesia.
  • Ureteroscopy. A small scope is passed through urethra and bladder into the ureter, which is the tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder. Lasers in the scope can break up the stone, and a tiny basket-like attachment pulls out the stone or its fragments.
  • Percutaneous nephrolithotomy. A small tunnel is made through the skin in the back to the kidney. A scope is used to break up and remove the stone.
  • Open surgery, which now is rarely done.

The surgical options are a lot less invasive than in the past -- but they are still more invasive than shock wave lithotripsy," Preminger says. "It is a terrific alternative to standard surgery. It is essential that patients be made aware of these possible new risks. But we should not discontinue shock wave treatment."

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