Kidney Stone Laser Treatment - Minimally Invasive Surgery

Kidney Stones Treatment

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Kidney Stones Treatment

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You may not know that almost 12% of Indians suffer from renal stones, out of which 50% develop severe complications if left untreated. This highlights the need for effective and timely treatment of the issue. Kidney stone laser treatment is a reliable, painless, and advanced technique. 

Renal calculi or kidney stones can become the cause of extensive pain for the patients, hindering their lives. Kidney stone laser surgery offers the scope to alleviate the discomfort with a minimally invasive approach. Curious to know more? Continue reading and make informed health decisions.

Procedure Name

Kidney Stone Laser 

Alternative Name

Laser Lithotripsy

Conditions Treated

Renal and Urinary Stones (Nephrolithiasis and Urolithiasis)

Benefits of the Surgery

  1. High-efficiency Rate

  2. Treats Multiple Stones

  3. Quicker Recovery

Performed by

Urologist

You can check Kidney Stones Treatment Cost here.

What is kidney stone laser treatment?

Kidney stones can vary in size from small ones passing unnoticed through urine. At the same time, large calculi cause discomfort and block urine flow. It can damage the renal and urinary systems if not passed naturally. 

Kidney stone laser operation has emerged as a preferred choice due to its precision in kidney stone excision. The approach breaks the renal stones into smaller fragments by utilising advanced technology. It minimises the need for surgical removal and promotes faster recovery.

Anatomy of the Kidney

Kidney stones occur because of the crystallisation of minerals or salts facilitated by inadequate water intake. Its size, shape, and location can vary, impacting the severity and the complexity of treatment. The main anatomical parts associated with renal calculi are:

  1. Kidneys: These bean-shaped organs of the spine form urine and manage blood pressure. It regulates electrolyte balance and red blood cell production. 

  2. Ureters: The tubes transport urine from the kidneys with peristaltic contractions propelling it towards the bladder.

  3. Urinary Bladder: A muscular, hollow organ in the pelvis that stores urine until it is expelled during urination.

  4. Urethra: Responsible for eliminating urine from the bladder and, in males, also facilitates semen passage during ejaculation.

Who needs kidney stone laser surgery?

Opting for laser treatment for kidney stone removal is gaining preference due to the advanced medical aspects. The technique has enabled patients to address the following issues with complete healthcare excellence:

  1. Extensive Pain: Kidney stones can cause severe discomfort and hinder urine flow. The laser approach prevents further complexities and eliminates stones from hard-to-reach areas.

  2. Recurrent Symptoms: Repetitive renal calculi imply the ineffectiveness of medicines and conventional treatments. Thus, surgical intervention like laser stone removal is necessitated.  

  3. Larger Stones: Removes kidney stones from 5mm to 2 cm in diameter, which cannot pass naturally through the urinary tract.

  4. Obstruction: Blockages cause complications like urinary tract infections, renal damage or failure. Thus, surgery is necessary to restore normal urine flow.

  5. Harder Calculi: Calcium oxalate or uric acid stones may resist dissolution through medication or dietary changes. In such cases, laser lithotripsy can be an ideal choice.

Types of Kidney Stone Laser Treatment

Different kidney stone laser treatments are available for individuals based on their conditions. It includes Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery (RIRS) and Flexible Ureteroscopy with Laser Lithotripsy (FURSL). Let’s look at what these approaches mean:

  1. Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery (RIRS): A minimally invasive technique to remove kidney stones located within the renal pelvis (central area of the kidney) or calyces (cup-shaped drain). It involves the insertion of laser fibre through the ureteroscope. 

The technique breaks the stones into smaller fragments passed through urine. RIRS is known for its high success rate in treating larger stones and avoiding external incisions.

  1. Flexible Ureteroscopy with Laser Lithotripsy (FURSL): FURSL uses a flexible ureteroscope to access and visualise the stone within the ureter or renal pelvis. Like RIRS, it uses laser energy to break down the stones and promote natural elimination. 

FURSL is particularly suitable for treating smaller stones in the ureter and offers minimal discomfort and a shorter recovery period.

Benefits of Kidney Stone Laser Treatment

Laser treatment for kidney stone removal is convenient and fast, making it a reliable choice. Here are some benefits of selecting laser treatment over surgical surgery are listed below:

  1. Reduced Pain: A minimally invasive procedure with smaller incisions, resulting in less tissue trauma and postoperative discomfort.

  2. Lower Risk of Recurrence: It removes kidney stones by targeting and breaking down underlying factors. This reduces the risk of future formation, improving the patient's overall health.

  3. Faster Recovery Time: Laser treatment reduces body trauma and allows patients to resume daily routines faster.

  4. Reduced Blood Loss: The approach breaks down stones without significant bleeding, eliminating the need for blood transfusions. It also minimises the risk of any other associated complications.

  5. Precise Stone Targeting: Laser technology targets stones without harming healthy tissues and facilitating their easier removal.

Expert Doctors

Dr. Suman Lata Nayak

Nephrology

26+ Years

Experience

100%

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Dr. Anupam Bhargava

Urology

46+ Years

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98%

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NABH Accredited Hospitals

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Protocol Before and On the Day of Surgery


The patient's well-being throughout the kidney laser procedure is the utmost priority for healthcare providers. To ensure holistic care and the effectiveness of the method, surgeons use some preoperative protocols. 

Before the Kidney Stone Laser Treatment

The aspects involved in preoperative preparation help determine the patient's condition, kidney stone type, size and location, etc. These factors ensure the effectiveness of the treatment.

Parameter

Prerequisites

Pre-op Assessment (Physical)

  1. CBC test

  2. Urinalysis

  3. Urine culture evaluation

Risk Evaluation

  1. Allergies

  2. Procedural risk vs benefits

Anaesthesia Selection

General

Fasting

6-8 hours

Additional Precautions

  1. Stop blood thinning medicines

  2. Quit smoking 1-2 weeks prior operation

On the Day of Laser Kidney Stone Removal 

Healthcare professionals also follow a protocol just before the procedure, which helps in the patient’s surgical preparation. These are important in terms of maintaining safety to avoid potential complications. 

Parameter

Prerequisites

Consent

Mandatory

Surgical Prep

  1. Hospital gown

  2. Remove accessories and jewellery

  3. Procedure briefing

Physical Evaluation

Vitals check-up (blood pressure, heart rate, oxygen, etc.)

Anaesthesia administration

As per the medical assessment


Procedure of Kidney Stone Laser Operation


RIRS and FURSL are advanced laser-based procedures that offer effective, minimally invasive, and faster recovery. Both techniques take about 1 to 2 hours to complete. The steps for these approaches are generally similar, including:

  1. A thin, flexible tube and illuminated camera (ureteroscope) is inserted via urethra, bladder, and the affected kidney.

  2. The surgeon uses the camera to locate and identify the stone.

  3. Once the stones are identified, a laser fibre is passed through the ureteroscope. 

  4. The laser energy targets and breaks the stone into smaller fragments. 

  5. After the stone breaks down, the surgeon may use basket retrieval, suction, or natural stone passage through urine.


Post-Treatment Care and Recovery

Patients can heal after the surgery within 1-2 days. The recovery focuses on managing discomfort and preventing recurrence through a healthy lifestyle.

In Hospital Recovery

Patients require immediate postoperative care and monitoring after kidney stone laser treatment to ensure proper recovery. This includes:

  1. Patients are monitored in a recovery area to assess their vital signs, irritation levels, and overall condition.

  2. Medication for pain may be prescribed to alleviate any discomfort experienced after the surgery.

  3. Patients are generally instructed to drink adequate fluids unless there is a contraindication. This helps improve urinary flow and excrete the stone out of the body. 

At-Home Recovery

Patients are advised to make certain dietary & lifestyle modifications to minimise the risk of stone recurrence. These recommendations may include:

  1. Balanced Diet: Limit the consumption of oxalate-rich foods (e.g., spinach, rhubarb, nuts). Adequate fluid intake is recommended to prevent stone formation.

  2. Reduced Animal Protein: Decrease red meat, poultry, and fish consumption to minimise the risk of kidney stone recurrence.

  3. Sodium Reduction: Lowering sodium intake is crucial to prevent calcium concentration and kidney stone formation.

  4. Medication Compliance: Patients should adhere to their medicinal regimen as directed by their healthcare provider.

Follow-up Appointments and Monitoring of Kidney Health 

Regular follow-up appointments are important to assess treatment success and prevent complications. This may involve:

  1. Imaging Studies: Periodic kidney ultrasound or CT scans detect stone recurrence and overall renal health.

  2. Urine and Blood Tests: Analysis of urine composition for potential stone formation. Blood tests, such as serum creatinine, can assess kidney function and overall health.

Patients should adhere to their surgeon's post-treatment care instructions. They can seek consultation for any concerns or questions regarding the recovery process.

Potential Complications of Kidney Stone Laser Treatment

Although the technique is considered safe, there are specific kidney stone laser treatment side effects and complications. Here are some of the potential risks related to the procedure:

  1. Infection: The risk of urinary tract infection (UTI) increases if pre-existing or unsterilised before surgery. Symptoms include fever, pain, and frequent urge to urinate.

  2. Urinary Stricture: Kidney stone laser treatment can cause scarring or narrowing of the ureter or urethra. It leads to urinary stricture, causing a weak urine stream or bladder inability.

  3. Postoperative Discomfort: Patients may experience mild pain or a burning sensation during urination. It lasts for 5-7 days and can be managed with medications.

Risks of Delay in Kidney Stone Laser Treatment

Delaying kidney stone laser treatment can lead to various risks and complications. It hampers the regular life of the individuals significantly and leads to:

  1. Complex Renal Calculi: Kidney stones can grow larger over time, making them harder to manage. Leaving it untreated necessitates invasive techniques like shock wave lithotripsy or open surgery.

  2. Renal Damage: Stones can cause persistent obstruction and complications like hydronephrosis (swollen kidneys due to urine build-up), pyelonephritis (bacterial inflammation of the kidneys), or kidney failure.

  3. Infection: Kidney stone treatment delays can cause severe systemic inflammatory responses like sepsis. It necessitates immediate medical attention to prevent fatalities.

Kidney Stone Laser Treatment Cost

Laser treatment for kidney stones cost in India is considered reasonable due to the advanced technology employed. The expenses associated with the procedure are subject to variations. 

It can differ based on the technique, chosen hospital or surgeon, patient's condition, and stone complexities. The table below gives an idea of the operation price.

Kidney Stone Laser Surgery

Cost Range

Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery (RIRS)

₹ 80,000  to ₹ 1,60,000

Flexible Ureteroscopy with Laser Lithotripsy (FURSL)

₹ 50,000  to ₹ 1,40,000

Please note that the laser treatment for kidney stones price mentioned above is just an estimation. For accurate and updated information, you can contact HexaHealth today.

Takeaway

Kidney stone laser treatment is a highly effective and advanced laser energy approach. This non-invasive and precise technique offers immediate relief from pain, promoting faster healing and a high success rate. 

We at HexaHealth can help you get started with the best course of treatment for long-term relief. Our empanelled best urologists ensure effective kidney stone laser surgery with transparent pricing and overall medical guidance. Connect with our experts today and learn more!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

During kidney stone laser treatment, a surgeon makes a small incision. Laser energy is then directed towards the stones, breaking them into smaller fragments. It can later be extracted or passed naturally through the urinary system.

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The kidney stone laser operation offers several benefits, making it a preferred choice for many patients. It includes: 

  1. Precise targeting of stones

  2. Reduced risk of complications 

  3. Faster recovery time

  4. Minimal damage to healthy tissues

  5. Lower risk of recurrence


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Yes, laser kidney stone removal is highly effective. It allows for the accurate fragmentation of stones without damaging surrounding tissues.

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Kidney stone laser treatment is safe and effective, but certain side effects are possible. Some of these include pain, minor bleeding, urinary tract irritation, and stent placement. However, serious complications are rare, making it highly preferable.

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Laser treatment is recommended for large, persistent, recurrent, or infection-causing stones. Actual suitability is determined through diagnostic assessment.

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Kidney stone laser treatment can cause mild discomfort, urine blood, and frequent urination. Most of these side effects resolve within 2-3 weeks and can be managed with medicines.

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Kidney stone laser treatment is performed under anaesthesia so patients do not experience pain during the procedure. However, mild discomfort or soreness may be felt in the days following the treatment, which can be managed with pain medication prescribed by the doctor.

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Laser treatment treats kidney stones with calcium, uric acid, and cystine. However, the suitability depends on size, location, and composition. Doctors assess cases and recommend appropriate treatment approaches.

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Generally laser treatment for kidney stones is done with two approaches. RIRS price ranges between ₹ 80,000  to ₹ 1,60,000 and FURSL costs around. ₹ 50,000  to ₹ 1,40,000. However, the expense can vary depending on factors such as the location, healthcare provider, and individual case.

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The success rate of kidney stone laser treatment is high, achieving stone-free status in up to 94% cases. However, the result can vary based on size, location, composition, and patient characteristics.

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To prevent kidney stones, it is important to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle. This includes: 

  1. Staying well-hydrated 

  2. Consuming a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables 

  3. Reducing animal protein and salt intake

  4. Avoiding excessive sugary beverages 

  5. Regular physical activity


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Kidney stone laser treatment is done under anaesthesia, making it usually painless. After surgery minor irritation is normal. However, post-procedure discomfort can be easily controlled with medication.

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Stress can increase kidney stone risk through poor dietary choices, dehydration, and disrupted sleep patterns. Managing it with relaxation methods like meditation and exercising can reduce the risk.

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Untreated kidney stones can cause recurrent stones, urinary tract infections, kidney damage, and decreased function. Larger stones obstruct the urinary tract, leading to severe pain and facilitating complications like renal infection or failure.

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Large kidney stones may require extensive treatment methods like: 

  1. Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL) 

  2. Percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) 

  3. Ureteroscopy with laser lithotripsy

Treatment choice depends on stone size, location, and specific patient characteristics.


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Managing kidney stone pain involves NSAIDs, heat, baths, heating pads, hydration, and medical intervention. Severe pain may require medical intervention. So consult a doctor for appropriate medical advice.

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Risk factors for kidney stones include dehydration, medical conditions (like gout or UTI), family history, dietary habits, obesity, and medications. Understanding these and adapting preventive measures can prevent its development.

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Kidney stones, primarily calcium oxalate and uric acid, are common and linked to dietary factors. While uric acid stones are associated with issues like gout or other metabolic disorders.

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References

All the articles on HexaHealth are supported by verified medically-recognized sources such as; peer-reviewed academic research papers, research institutions, and medical journals. Our medical reviewers also check references of the articles to prioritize accuracy and relevance. Refer to our detailed editorial policy for more information.


  1. Ureteroscopy with Laser Lithotripsy: Treatment for Kidney Stones [Internet]. Healthline. 2022. link
  2. Lithotripsy: Procedure, recovery, and side effects [Internet]. www.medicalnewstoday.com. 2018.link
  3. Admin. Laser Treatment for Kidney Stone in Pune | Kidney Stone Treatment in Pune [Internet]. Dr. Rajesh Dhake.link
  4. UpToDate [Internet]. www.uptodate.com.link
  5. Porwal DA. 10 Reasons Why You Should Choose Laser Treatment Over Conventional Surgery [Internet]. Blog. 2023.link
  6. Holmium Laser Lithotripsy: Procedure, Risks & Benefits [Internet]. Cleveland Clinic.link
  7. https://www.facebook.com/WebMD. Kidney Stones [Internet]. WebMD. 2019.link
  8. Mayo Clinic. Kidney stones - Diagnosis and treatment [Internet]. Mayoclinic.org. 2020. link
  9. Vaidyanathan S, Singh G, Selmi F, Hughes PL, Soni BM, Oo T. Complications and salvage options after laser lithotripsy for a vesical calculus in a tetraplegic patient: a case report. Patient Safety in Surgery. 2015;9(1):3.link
  10. Ureteroscopy and Laser Lithotripsy» Department of Urology» College of Medicine» University of Florida [Internet]. link
  11. Peng C, Chen Z, Xu J. Risk factors for urinary infection after retrograde upper urinary lithotripsy. Medicine. 2021 Aug 6;100(31):e26172.link
  12. Kidney stones - lithotripsy - discharge Information | Mount Sinai - New York [Internet]. Mount Sinai Health System. link
  13. Game-changing laser technology pulverizes kidney stones­ [Internet]. www.ucihealth.org. [cited 2024 Apr 9].link

Reviewer

Dr. Aman Priya Khanna

Dr. Aman Priya Khanna

MBBS, DNB General Surgery, Fellowship in Minimal Access Surgery, FIAGES

12 Years Experience

Dr Aman Priya Khanna is a well-known General Surgeon, Proctologist and Bariatric Surgeon currently associated with HealthFort Clinic, Health First Multispecialty Clinic in Delhi. He has 12 years of experience in General Surgery and worke...View More

Author

Sparshi Srivastava

Sparshi Srivastava

B.Tech Biotechnology (Bansal Institute of Engineering and Technology, Lucknow)

2 Years Experience

An ardent reader, graduated in B.Tech Biotechnology. She was previously associated with medical sciences secondary research and writing. With a keen interest and curiosity-driven approach, she has been able to cont...View More

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