Kidney stones can be incredibly painful, and finding relief becomes a top priority. James Richey, MD, and Lance Templeton, MD, of Alexandria Urology Associates in Alexandria and Oakdale, Louisiana, offer lithotripsy as an option in treating kidney stones. To explore this and other treatments, call the office to set up a visit or spend a few moments on the online booking page. Same-day appointments are available.
Lithotripsy is a medical procedure used to treat kidney stones or stones that develop in your gallbladder or liver. Kidney stones are small formations of crystallized minerals and other substances. Smaller stones can usually exit your body during urination but larger stones require treatment.
Lithotripsy uses sound waves to break up kidney stones into smaller pieces. The type of lithotripsy used at Alexandria Urology Associates is called extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL).
Researchers found that as many as 70-90% of patients who try lithotripsy are found to be free of kidney stones within a few months of treatment. In some cases, several treatments are needed to fully clear all the stones.
The process works by using a machine called a lithotripter to generate shock waves and send them into your body. It’s a noninvasive procedure and doesn’t require incisions.
You’ll receive a sedative to help you relax during your procedure. Depending on the size of your kidney stones, you might need a local or general anesthetic.
The entire process usually takes around 45 minutes. You might need to remain in the hospital for a day or two after your procedure. During this time, the kidney stone fragments should pass through your urine. It can take 4-8 weeks for all fragments to pass from your body.
Not all kidney stones will respond to lithotripsy. Stones must be clearly visible by X-ray for this approach to be successful. The number of stones, their size, and their location can also determine if lithotripsy is the best treatment.
Alexandria Urology Associates also offers ureteroscopy and percutaneous nephrolithotomy to treat kidney stones. Left untreated, kidney stones can cause serious complications. Chronic infections, narrowing of your urinary tract, and long-term kidney damage are all possible.
You can rest assured that your medical team will help you find the best possible treatment. You’ll also receive full details about each available treatment, which helps you make an informed decision about your health care.
The process begins with a consultation, which can be booked online at any time of day or night. You’re also welcome to call or stop by the office to check appointment availability. If you’re in pain, same-day appointments are available.