Kidney stones are a concretion of crystals formed from dietary minerals in the urine and are classified by their location in the kidney, bladder or ureter. Usually small stones formed in the kidneys are passed through urine without being noticed. But when the size of the stone increases it may cause obstruction to the passage of urine causing severe pain
Severe pain felt in the flanks is the most common symptom of kidney stones. Nausea, vomiting, blood in the urine, fever etc are associated symptoms.
Preliminary diagnosis can be made based on the symptoms, history and physical examination by the physician. Urinalysis and Ultrasonic scanning and blood tests will be suggested by the physician for confirming the existence kidney stone.
Pain control medication is the first step of treatments for kidney stones. When symptoms are not severe watching and observing the developments and waiting for the stone to pass through urine is very good option which has often proved to be successful. If symptoms are continuing, other procedures for removing the stone will have to be resorted to. Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy is a procedure in which shock waves are made use of to shatter the stone into smaller fragments which will then pass through urine. Some times ureteral stent is used to bypass the area of obstruction and to prevent ureteral damage.
In surgical procedure the kidney is accessed through an incision in the side. The kidney is opened and the stone is located and the same is removed. Open surgeries need long incision and greater recovery time.
Laparoscopic surgery is conducted through three or small incision of size 1 to 2 cms. Through one of these incisions a laparoscope which is an instrument that can be used for taking the video of the internal organs and the surgery is inserted and guided carefully till it reaches the area to be operated. Through other incisions special instruments for carrying out the surgery are inserted. By carefully watching the videos taken by the laparoscope in a monitor placed in front of the surgeon, he carried out the surgery. The stone in the kidney is located and it is wrapped in a wrapper and is taken out.
Benefits of laparoscopic procedure
- Less incision and hence less blood loss.
- Faster healing and less pain
- Faster recovery and speedy return to normal activities
- Less scars left