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Treating Kidney Stones: Percutaneous Lithotripsy


Percutaneous lithotripsy may be done before, after, or instead of other treatments. If you need this procedure, your doctor will discuss its risks and possible complications. You will be told how to prepare. And you will be told about anesthesia that will keep you pain-free during treatment.


Lithotripsy with Incision

Percutaneous lithotripsy removes larger stones through a small incision in your side. Your doctor places a viewing tube through your incision. The stone is sighted, shattered with a special device if needed, and removed. Afterward, you’ll briefly have a small soft tube in your incision. This tube carries urine away from your kidney and out of your body.


Your Recovery

You may spend 1–3 days in the hospital. The tube in your side will be removed during or shortly after your hospital stay. A follow-up visit in three months will ensure that your stone is gone. Later visits will help your doctor spot new stones if any form.

Call Your Doctor If You Have:

  • Sudden pain or flank pain.

  • A fever over 100.1°F.

  • Nausea that lasts for days.

  • Heavy bleeding when you urinate or through your drainage tube.

  • Swelling or redness around your incision.


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