Kidney stones or commonly known as renal calculi are hard masses of salts and minerals that get accumulated in the kidneys, pelvic ureteric junction, bladder, etc. Kidney stones are mostly made up of calcium, oxalate, phosphate, cystine(rare), and xanthine (rare). While kidney stones are more common in middle-aged men, they can occur to anyone at any age.
Kidney stones can vary in shapes and sizes from being as small as a grain of sand to as big as a golf ball. While most stones usually pass on their own naturally within a few days to a few weeks without major discomfort. However, some stones can be stubborn and cause extreme pain and also increase the risk of complications. In such cases, you may require surgical intervention for kidney stone removal.
Prolonging kidney stone treatment can impact surrounding tissues and even obstruct the ureteral passage causing immense pain around the abdomen. Get a free appointment with our urologists near you for your kidney stone treatment.
Kidney stones form as a result of low fluid concentration in the urine which increases the amount of toxic waste. Our kidneys filter the toxic waste from the body and flush it out through urine. However, when the concentration of toxic waste in the urine increases, it lumps with each other to form a crystal-like substance, also known as kidney stones.
Kidney stones may also form due to excessive amounts of certain salts and minerals. Calcium stones are one of the most common types of stones that contribute to about 80% of all kidney stone cases. A diet rich in calcium or oxalate is absorbed by the kidneys which increases the amount of calcium oxalate in the urine. Apart from that, kidney stones are also caused by frequent urinary tract infections (UTI), increased amounts of uric acid in the body due to high animal protein intake, and certain lifestyle habits.
Uric acid stones
Kidney stones cause excruciating pain that becomes unbearable for most patients. Kidney stones usually block the ureteral passage causing urinary retention, a complication that may cause hydronephrosis (swelling up of one or both the kidneys due to build-up of urine) and even result in kidney failure.
Kidney stones can be silent which means they can go unnoticed for a long time. Therefore, prolonging kidney stone removal surgery can increase the severity of the disease and increase the risk of complications.
One of the most common complications during kidney stone surgery can be an injury to the ureter due to stent insertion, which can lead to ureteral perforation. Once the ureter perforates, it may require several weeks to heal. Moreover, it is important for the surgeon to remove the stones completely to avoid recurrence. The urologist must prevent scarring of the area around the perforation, which can lead to a ureteral stricture.
Prevention against kidney stones mostly involves dietary restrictions, lifestyle changes, and staying hydrated. However, certain preventive measures act differently for patients and so, it is important to consult your specialist doctor on how to prevent kidney stones.
Myth- Soda causes kidney stones
Facts- Soda is a diuretic in nature, which can also contribute to the salt content in the urine. So consuming sodas, colas, etc., does not cause stones if you drink enough water to decrease the concentration.
Myth- Beer will help in flushing out kidney stones
Facts- Beer can help flush out the small stones by inducing urination. However, consuming excess beer to flush out large stones may be ineffective and you may end up with more pain. Beer has oxalate-rich contents, which can increase the risk of kidney stone formation. In addition, beer is also high in calories and high consumption can increase the risk of obesity, another risk factor for kidney stones.
Myth- Kidney stones can be treated with shock waves
Fact- ESWL or extracorporeal shockwave lithotripsy can treat kidney stones. It is a modern procedure that does not involve any cuts, stitches or scars and is usually considered an effective alternative to traditional kidney stone removal surgery for small stones. However, ESWL may take multiple sessions to completely break the stones into smaller fragments. ESWL is not an ideal procedure for large-sized stones.
Consult a urologist if your pain is unbearable and you cannot find a comfortable position to rest. Sometimes pain can be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, fever, and chills. You must also seek immediate medical assistance if you see blood in your urine or experience extreme difficulty while passing the urine.
Kidney stones occur in different shapes and sizes. Small stones usually pass on their own naturally without causing any major pain. However, if the diameter of the stone is large, it may get stuck in the ureteral passage, kidneys, or urinary bladder. In that case, the patient may experience symptoms that may result in discomfort.
Kidney stone specialists may recommend home remedies and prescribe several medications to relieve pain and manage symptoms of kidney stones. Some of the home remedies include drinking enough water, encouraging dietary changes, etc. The aim is to induce urination that can help flush out the stones stuck in the ureter and urinary bladder. Some patients also go for acupuncture therapies as an alternative to kidney stone treatment. However, these non-surgical methods can affect patients differently based on their medical health and type of stone. It is important to consult your urologists to opt for the best methods for kidney stone treatment that are effective for you.
Kidney stone removal procedures are usually considered a medical necessity for stones stuck in the ureter, kidneys, etc. Prolonged kidney stones can also lead to serious health issues in children as well as adults. Most health insurance companies cover the cost of kidney stone surgeries in India.
However, there is a possibility that the insurance coverage may differ from one policy to another depending on the terms and conditions set by the insurance provider. Insurance coverage usually reduces the cost of kidney stone treatment and decreases the financial burden on the individual. A few of the insurance providers that may cover kidney stones treatment in India are as follows:
The recovery after the kidney stone removal procedure can vary depending on the health of the patients. If the patients have undergone ESWL or URSL, they will likely be able to resume normal activities within a week. For PCNL surgery, the recovery time is around one to two weeks due to its minimally invasive nature. However, if you have a temporary stent in place after your surgery, there may be some restrictions related to physical activities that may be limited due to the discomfort.
Kidney stone surgeries are effective for the treatment of kidney stones for long-term results. There may be very less chances of recurrence depending on the surgical expertise of the surgeon along with the patient’s condition. Patients who undergo kidney stone treatments experience massive relief after the surgery with improved quality of life. However, kidney stones can be recurrent, and thus, proper preventive measures are essential.
There was a case of a 34-year-old female from Hyderabad who was diagnosed with staghorn calculus of size 8cm (around 80mm) that was performed at Avasa hospital in Hyderabad. Usually, doctors recommend two to three sittings for staghorn calculus, but since the size was significant and the patient wanted to remove it in a single sitting, the surgery was done. Our renowned doctor, Dr. Priyank Salecha, conducted a successful surgery for the patient that took around 2 to 2.5 hours but finally, the patient was able to walk home without any complications.
Cities Where We Treat Kidney-stone
Do all kidney stones require surgery?
No, not all kidney stones require surgery. Stones less than 4mm in size may be flushed out by drinking excess water or prescribing medication from the doctor. In any case, consult your doctor if you feel any pain or discomfort.
I was recently diagnosed with a 15mm stone. What surgery do I need?
Urologists suggest PCNL for a stone size similar to or greater than 15mm. Since the size of the stone is significant enough, it becomes very difficult to pass through the ureter. Hence, minimally invasive treatment or PCNL is done for large stone sizes.
What size of stone needs a minimally invasive treatment?
Minimally invasive treatment or PCNL is done for a stone size greater than 15mm. Since the size of the stone is very large, it becomes difficult to pass through the ureter and hence, needs minimally invasive surgery where the stone is broken into fragments and removed through incisions.
Is minimally invasive surgery painful?
NO, minimally invasive surgery is not painful since it is done under general anesthesia. The patient will be asleep throughout the surgery and won’t feel any pain. However, the patient may feel mild numbness around the incision site after the effects of anesthesia wear off.
Stay hydrated – Drinking excess water is important to prevent kidney stones. An individual must drink at least 3 liters of water each day or consume enough fluid to prevent dehydration. This increases the fluid concentration in the urine which can also flush out the small stones from the body. Not drinking excess water can decrease the concentration of fluid in the urine resulting in the accumulation of toxic wastes. Citrus juice like lemonade, orange juice, etc. can also help prevent kidney stones.
Consume less sodium – A high salt diet can increase the risk of calcium stones. The urology care foundation reveals that too much salt in the urine can prevent calcium from being reabsorbed from the urine to the blood, which increases the risk of kidney stones. Urologists recommend limiting sodium consumption to 2,000 mg (almost half a tablespoon) in a day. If you have had calcium stones in the past, the sodium intake must be reduced to 1,500 mg daily. In addition, a low-sodium diet is also good for a healthy heart and blood pressure. Here are some food items that can contain excessive sodium –
Avoid calcium-rich supplements – Since calcium stones are among the most common stones, people often believe that they should avoid calcium. However, natural sources of calcium such as low-fat milk, cheese, and yogurt are all good for your body. Consuming excess calcium supplements can increase the risk of stones.
Consume less animal protein – Kidney stones are also associated with excess consumption of animal protein that increases the uric acid content in the body. An increased amount of uric acid may lead to the formation of uric acid stones and some oxalate stones. In addition, an excess amount of animal protein decreases citrate levels which restrict the production of stones. Low citrate levels increase the risk of developing stones. However, urologists recommend daily consumption of not more than 85 grams of meat in each meal, if you still wish to consume meat. Therefore, avoiding eating beef, poultry, fish, pork, etc. in excess amounts can prevent kidney stones.
Pristyn Care is a full-stack healthcare service provider associated with some of the best hospitals and clinics across the country. The aim is to ease the process of accessing advanced treatment and surgeries for every patient at minimal costs. Pristyn Care has some of the best urologists and kidney stone specialists with years of experience in PCNL, RIRS, URSL, and ESWL to ensure a very high success rate. Most kidney stone surgeries are daycare which do not involve any incision (except for PCNL, which involves minimal incision) and offer faster recovery. Some of the benefits of choosing Pristyn Care for kidney stones treatment are –
Highly experienced urologists– Our team of kidney stone surgeons are fully trained and certified to perform painless surgeries with a high success rate. Our urologists will discuss all the necessary information about kidney stones before the surgery. This allows our surgeons to offer comprehensive treatment and make our patients aware of the certain risks involved during the treatment.
Accept all Insurances- A dedicated team at Pristyn Care assists with the insurance approvals for kidney stone surgeries. However, the insurance approval depends on the type of your insurance company and the terms and conditions set by them. Our team of experts will do their best to help you claims any benefits from the medical insurance.
Flexible payment options- Pristyn Care offers various modes of payment for kidney stone surgeries with no cost EMI. In addition, we accept credit cards and cash payments for the procedure.
Free pick-up and drop facility- Pristyn Care provides free cab services for pick-up and drop-off to each patient within the city on the day of kidney stone surgery.
Free follow-up consultation- A smooth and faster recovery is essential after the treatment. Pristyn Care provides free follow-up consultation and proper diet charts to all the patients who have undergone kidney stone surgery for a quick recovery process.
COVID-19 safe environment – During the COVID crisis, Pristyn Care ensures proper sanitization of all the OTs and clinics before each surgery to curb the spread of the COVID. It is our top priority to maintain excellent hygiene and social distancing while providing a seamless patient experience.
Pristyn Care has some of the best urologists with adequate training and years of experience in kidney stone surgeries. Our doctors and surgeons are upskilled in performing advanced treatment for the best results. You can book an appointment with the kidney stones doctors at Pristyn Care to get rid of excruciating kidney stones pain in the following ways: