Laser therapy for kidney stones breaks up kidney stones into pieces that are small enough to be passed out of the body through urination or removed from the body. You may need laser therapy if you have kidney stones that are painful or block your urinary tract.
Inserting a tube (ureteroscope) into your kidney through the urethral opening, surgical instruments are moved through the bladder and the ureter until they reach the kidney.
Tell a health care provider about:
- Any allergies you have.
- All medicines you are taking, including vitamins, herbs, eye drops, creams, and over-the-counter medicines.
- Any problems you or family members have had with anesthetic medicines.
- Any blood disorders you have.
- Any surgeries you have had.
- Any medical conditions you have.
- Whether you are pregnant or may be pregnant.
- Allergic reactions to medicines.
- Damage to the urethra, bladder, or ureter.
- Urinary tract infection (UTI).
- Narrowing of the urethra (urethral stricture).
- Difficulty passing urine.
- Blockage of the kidney caused by a fragment of kidney stone.
- Follow instructions from your health care provider about eating or drinking restrictions.
- Ask your health care provider about:
- Changing or stopping your regular medicines. This is especially important if you are taking diabetes medicines or blood thinners
- Taking medicines such as aspirin and ibuprofen. These medicines can thin your blood. Do not take these medicines before your procedure unless directed by your health care provider.
- You may have a physical exam before the procedure. The exam may include imaging studies and blood or urine tests.
- You may be given antibiotic medicine to treat or prevent infection.
- If your ureter is too narrow, your health care provider may place a soft, flexible tube (stent) inside of it. The stent may be placed days or weeks before your laser therapy procedure.
- Ask your health care provider how your surgical site will be marked or identified.
- Plan to have someone take you home after the procedure.
- If you will be going home right after the procedure, plan to have someone stay with you for 24 hours.
What Happens During The Procedure?
- An IV tube will be inserted into one of your veins.
- You will be given one or more of the following:
- A medicine to help you relax (sedative).
- A medicine to numb the area (local anesthetic).
- A medicine to make you fall asleep (general anesthetic).
- A ureteroscope will be inserted into your urethra to send images to a video screen in the operating room to guide your surgeon to the area of your kidney that will be treated.
- A tube will be threaded through your bladder and ureter, up to your kidney.
- The laser device will be inserted into your kidney through the tube. Your surgeon will pulse the laser on and off to break up kidney stones.
- A surgical instrument that has a tiny wire basket may be inserted into your kidney to remove the pieces of broken kidney stone.
Post Procedure Care
- Your blood pressure, heart rate, breathing rate, and blood oxygen level will be monitored often until the medicines you were given have worn off.
- You will be given pain medicine as needed.
- You may continue to receive antibiotics.
- You may have a stent temporarily placed in your ureter.
- You may be asked to strain your urine to collect any stone fragments that you pass. These fragments may be tested.
- Do not drive for 24 hours if you received a sedative.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider.