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Lithotripsy is a non-invasive procedure that uses high-energy shock waves or lasers to break down and eliminate bothersome stones in the kidney, quickly and effectively. During the procedure, a special machine called a lithotripter generates the shock waves that travel into your body and break apart the stones.
You must stop taking blood thinners 4 days prior to the procedure, as these can interfere with your blood’s ability to clot properly.
There are no food or dietary restrictions before the procedure.
The procedure is completed in one sitting in a day, depending on the size and type of stones. The procedure usually takes about 30 to 90 minutes to perform.
You are settled comfortably in an area where your privacy is respected throughout the procedure.
Before the procedure, you will be asked to remove any jewellery or other objects that may interfere with the procedure.
You will be asked to change into a hospital gown and lie on a bed and positioned on a soft, transparent cushion-like apparatus attached to the bed.
Your vital parameters will be checked before the procedure.
During the procedure, high-energy shock waves will be transmitted through your body through the cushion-like apparatus, until they reach the kidney stones. A computerized USG machine is used to accurately locate the stone within the kidney. The shock waves are accurately targeted at the stones. The waves will break the stones into very small pieces that can easily be passed through your urinary system.
A constant tik-tik sound comes from the lithotripter. It is heard during the entire process. If the sound irritates you, you can ask for soft, rubber disposable earplugs available with the technician.
After the procedure, you will be required to spend about one hour in recovery/observation before being sent home.
During this time, some patients may experience bruising, soreness, giddiness and vomiting which will subside in some time.
You must drink plenty of water for several days after lithotripsy. This will help the kidneys flush out any remaining stone fragments.
Some patients may experience slight pain or a burning sensation during urination, for which antibiotics are prescribed.
A diet chart is given to you that needs to be adhered to, post the procedure.