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URINARY STONE & SWL

Urolithiasis is a condition which results in complete or partial, acute or chronic, continuous or intermittent blockage of the urinary tract due to abnormal collection of mineral salts (often calcium).

Urinary calculi have plagued men for centuries (men develop stones twice as often as women) and affect some individuals according to predisposing inherited biochemical or anatomic factors and environmental influence.

Roughly 2% to 3% of the world population suffers from kidney or urethral stones during their lifetime.

The consequences of urinary calculi are responsible for 10% of urological hospital admissions worldwide. Although urinary calculi may be eliminated naturally by the body, natural elimination is frequently accompanied by considerable pain and very often by serious complications, such as obstruction and infection of the urinary tract.

Urinary stones may consist of several different substances.
The most frequently found are:

• calcium oxalate and phosphate
• magnesium ammonium phosphate (struvite)
• uric acid
• cystine

Urinary stones may be located in different places inside the urinary tract in the renal cavities (the calyces and the pelvis), in the ureter, in the bladder or the urethra.

The stones form most frequently in one of the kidneys, from where, following the flow of urine, they tend to migrate along the ureter towards the bladder. From the bladder they move along the urethra towards the outside.

Urolithiasis may also occurs with various inherited and metabolic disorders and following urinary tract infections.

When not treated, urinary obstruction can become very serious and in addition to its negative impact on quality of life, can lead to a dilation of the urinary tract and eventual loss of functioning renal tissue.

PREVENTION OF UROLITHIASIS

The primary way to try to prevent kidney stones is to drink plenty of fluids, ideally water. This high volume of fluid moving through the urinary tract keep small crystals moving through the kidneys and decrease the likelihood for a stone to develop.

TREATMENT OPTIONS

Only your doctor is qualified to help you determine if this type of device is the appropriate alternative for treatment of your stone disease. Ask about SWL and our non-invasive technologies, and explore our web site for more information.

SWL
For a majority of cases, surgical manipulation is not necessary, but exact identification of stone and rigorous patient selection is important for an accurate treatment of the disease.
Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy (ESWL) is a non-invasive technique for disintegration of urinary calculi. Since its introduction in clinical practice nearly 20 years ago, SWL has become the standard treatment for urinary calculi. This solution reduces stones to fragments using shock waves and is the most common way to treat stones that will not pass on their own. As a non-surgical procedure this technique, not requiring any analgesia without hospital stay, is an ideal treatment alternative for patients suffering from urolithiasis.