Is regular monitoring of kidney stones good practice?

Posted , 5 users are following.

For five+ years I had regular, annual monitoring of my kidney stones, either an x-ray or ultrasound at my local hospital. I only had one stone initially, found during an ultrasound for gall stones. Over the years I developed two more and now have two in one kidney and one (1cm) in the other, along with a cyst, which has also grown. Thankfully, so far, I haven't had any problems with them, although I do get urinary infections.

Two years ago I decided to move my urology care to another hospital as all my records, apart from urology, were there. I really wish I hadn't, as my original consultant was very good and I didn't feel as happy with the new consultant. After two years of monitoring under this second consultant the stones hadn't grown any more and I have now been discharged from hospital care.

Can anyone tell me if regular monitoring is standard practice in good urology departments, even if the stones aren't a problem? I would really like to go back to my original consultant and would like to talk to my GP about this.

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  • Posted

    as I understand it things can change pretty quickly when it comes to stones. I had one in each kidney the larger got to 7mm and they suggested breaking it up. I did that and now the last scan shows several stones in both kidneys. 😦 I think that once a year scans are what we will end up with. provided nothing more happens in the meanwhile. dont know if that helps but that's all I got.

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  • Posted

    From my own experience, a regular return appointment with your urologist is crucial for stone sufferers. There's always that lingering "what if?" worry we all have after a major stone event, and getting that yearly follow-up is pretty important. For instance, I was convinced earlier this year that from the look of my urine I had another stone. But when scans were taken at my one year follow-up at my urologist, the images all came out clear. So for at least peace of mind, I definitely think the return visits are important.

    Best wishes to you....

    • Martin
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  • Posted

    Thank you both Jeff and Martin for your replies. I will definitely be having that conversation with my GP and see what she says. Fingers crossed!

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  • Posted

    Is there any blood in your urine? That would be an indication that you could have problems with the kidney stones? Having frequent urinary infections in itself is pretty miserable.

    I had a few kidney stones a couple of years ago. About 27 cm in total. I had them removed by keyhole surgery and am now fine. When I went back to surgeon for post op appointment he said he managed to take out all the stones and was not expecting me to have any more trouble but if I started getting frequent urinary tract infections again he suggested I have a scan.

    I would go back to GP and see if they can refer you to your original consultant.

    I saw 3 or 4 different urologists before the one in Southmead at Bristol finally agreed to operate.

    Good luck with all this.

    Take care and keep in touch


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    • Posted

      Thanks very much Sarah. When I have urine infections I always have blood in my urine. One of our practice nurses was very concerned, as when she tried to dip the urine sample there was so much blood in it it was off the scale. However, as soon as I start with antibiotics - often within hours - the blood disappears. I did have a cystoscopy a few years ago and everything was fine. I think I've had so many infections over the years that the surface of the bladder must be quite fragile.

      I'm definitely going to talk to my GP about this and get her opinion. Even though nothing has changed with the stones and cyst I am just concerned that they're no longer being monitored at all and I concur with Martin's thought of 'what if?'.

      I hope that things remain good with you. Take care.

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