New technique mixes two ultrasound technologies and promises to be an effective option – with less pain and without anesthesia.
Who has, or had, kidney stone(s)know well the disorder and the pains that cause. But now there is hope for a new treatment.
It will still be a long way off, but a study has already been presented, in the The Journal of Urologywhich presents this promising technique.
The authors of the study announce that this was the first time that it was used ultrasonic propulsion and blast wave lithotripsy to deal with this problem.
This new technique combines these two ultrasound technologies and presents itself as an option to remove kidney stones with the minimal pain and no anesthesiaexplains the portal The Brighter Side of News.
The doctor uses a transducer portable device placed on the skin to direct ultrasound waves to the stone.
Ultrasound can then be used to move and reposition the stones to promote either their passage (ultrasonic propulsion) or the breaking of the stone (bursting wave lithotripsy).
Patients usually undergo shock wave lithotripsy; But this blast wave lithotripsy doesn’t even need anesthesia because it’s (almost) painless, according to Kennedy Hall, who led the study.
“IT IS almost painless and you can do the treatment while the patient is awake and without anesthesia, which is essential”, described the doctor.
The team hopes that this procedure of moving or breaking stones can be carried out in a clinic or in a emergency room from hospital.
Hall recalled that most people who have a kidney stone are referred to wait to see if the stone comes out by itself. But this can last for weeks – and nearly one in every patient goes on to surgery anyway.
With this innovation, the idea is to treat the stones no need to perform a surgery. And trying not to cause pain to the patient – who would be awake and without anesthesia, as already mentioned.
This study involved 29 patients: 16 treated only with ultrasonic propulsion and the other 13 with ultrasonic propulsion and blast wave lithotripsy.
In two-thirds of cases, the stones moved. In two cases, the stones left the kidney and entered the bladder.
Burst wave lithotripsy fragmented the stones in seven of the cases.
Patients were followed up over the two weeks following the procedure: 18 of the 21 patients (86%) who had the stones in the lower part of the kidney, closer to the bladder, had no stones in the end. On average, the stone disappeared in just four days.
This study has already started in 2018, funded by… NASA. The US space agency wanted to find out whether kidney stones could be moved or destroyed without anesthesia on long space flights (missions to Mars, for example).