Kidney stones are very common and generally harmless, but sometimes a kidney stone can become stuck on its way out of your body. When this happens, it can be important for your doctor to pinpoint the location of the stone so that it can be helped on its way. This is usually done using imaging methods such as an abdominal ultrasound at the London clinic.
Why Do Kidney Stones Get Stuck?
Kidney stones are small accumulations of waste materials that can form inside your kidneys. They are most likely to happen if you aren’t drinking enough, if you are on certain kinds of medication, or if you have high levels of the waste products due to a kidney condition. The stones are usually very small, so they simply make their way down the ureter to your bladder. From here they can pass out of your body via the urethra. However, if a stone is more than about 6mm in diameter, it may be too big to fit through these narrow tubes. A blockage in these tubes could also put you at risk of developing a urinary tract infection, which might require treatment with antibiotics. You may therefore need an abdominal ultrasound in London to check on a stone that is causing pain or seems to be stuck.
Treating Stuck Kidney Stones
If you have a large or painful kidney stone, your doctor might recommend treatment to break it up or even an operation to remove it surgically. The precise location of the kidney stone usually needs to be pinpointed first, usually through an abdominal ultrasound or another imaging technique at the London clinic. Depending on the size and location of the stone, it can then be targeted with the right treatment. Ultrasound waves can actually be used again to break up the stone into pieces small enough to pass out in your urine. Otherwise, the stone may be removed using ureterorenoscopy, percutaneous nephrolithotomy, or in rare cases open surgery.