Surgical procedure to remove the kidney stones is Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PCNL).
About Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy
Surgical procedure to remove the kidney stones is Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PCNL). It is used when lithotripsy and ureteroscopy does not prove sucessful. It is used for comparatively larger kidney stones that cannot be passed out of the body via urine.
More Information on Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy
The indications for kidney stone surgery include:
- Stones larger than 2 cm in diameter
- Excessive pain in the kidney
- Infections arising in the urinary tract of the body
- Stone blocking regular flow of urine
- Lithotripsy and Ureteroscopy did not prove successful.
The tests to be carried out before the procedure include:
- A complete physical examination, carried out to determine the size, location and number of stones present in the body
- A pregnancy test is done for women of child bearing age to make sure that the woman is not pregnant as the shockwaves and lasers can harm the baby.
- For patients of elderly age, an EKG test is performed to ensure that the patient does not suffer from any potential heart disease.
- Tests for allergic reactions are carried out to ensure that the patient is not allergic to any of the components of the medications and fluids used in the lithotripsy treatment.
Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PCNL) is performed by an experienced urologist. It is performed under general anesthesia.
The surgeon puts a cut in the back of the body to insert a tube into the kidney via bladder. X-ray will be used to find the exact location of the stone and access them.
If the stone is large to fit the tube, then it is broken into smaller pieces. Stones are drained through the tube. The surgeon might leave the tube inside for a few hours to ensure that all the stone fragments have drained out.
The patient has to stay in hospital for 1 to 2 days after the procedure.
Tests like X – ray and ultrasound are carried out after a few days to make sure that none of the stone particles are left behind.
The recovery time after this procedure ranges between a few days to several weeks depending on the condition of the patient before the procedure and the effects that the stone had on the organ. If there are no complications following the procedure, the patient can recover completely in a week’s time.
The doctor will recommend increasing intake of water considerably. The patients are advised to limit the intake of foods with high protein content and salt. Meats, bananas, pulses, nuts, coffee and green leafy vegetables should be avoided during the recovery period.
Risk and Complication
Patients may witness some side effects after the procedure. These include:
- Small pieces of stones lodged into the ureters, blocking the flow of urine from the kidneys to the bladder.
- Abnormality developing in the kidney function.
Bleeding around the organ after the procedure.
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