Lithotripsy treatment was so painful- any advice?

Posted , 6 users are following.

hi all!

i had my first lithotripsy treatment today on my 3mm stone.

the first out of three, and they will be spaced between a 2 week interval.

has anyone else had this? i found it so painful from the start and it got unbearable at the end, despite taking some paracetamol and ibuprofen beforehand.

I would appreciate any advice or tips on how you cope with it?

thank you

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13 Replies

  • Posted


    I have had this done many times ( 50+).

    i am a chronic kidney stone former have had them since i was 15 and now 54.

    had over 150 stones .

    WHAT kind of lipotripsy ya having?

    Is urologist putting you to sleep for procedure???

    since i have had them so long i have had it many ways.

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    • Posted


      i just read your lost and was shocked at how many times youve had lithrotripsy! i also am a chronic kidney stone former. i was 22 and pregnant when i had my first one. after many urologists, no one has come up with a solution to keep me forming them. i have had multiple lithos, cystoscopy, and am now waiting to hav pcnl surgery for a stone that is 1.5 cm. in the years you have had stones, obviously they havent found a solution for you either?

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    • Posted

      no been on every diet ( however the low oxilate does help).

      i spent two weeks at the EMORY KIDNEY STONE CLINIC in ATLANTA.

      THEY did not help in the least.

      HAVE BEEN THRU SEVERAL UROLOGIST; finally have one now that i love and he has been there for me the past 15 years.


      i have pain meds i keep at home ( he knows i hate the drugs and not an addict)

      i go to the ER when i can no longer stand it and by then im ready to hurt somebody; so he calls ahead for me and i am immediately hooked up to dilaudid.

      i have had so many stones that i am allergic to most narcotics. must be given 25 mg of benadryl before dilaudid.

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    • Posted

      Hi, Stephanie. A low oxalate diet makes all the difference in the world, according to my own experiences. That and water, water, water intake. If you're vigilant about both, you are more than halfway there about stone prevention.



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    • Posted

      I had pcnl for a few large stones. Total about 24 cm.

      They put me to sleep. Then they lay me on my stomach and accessed stones through the back. I was in hospital for a week. Had a catheter in for 3 days and a stent for a week.

      Thankfully the surgeon managed to get to all the stones and remove them. He is not expecting me to have any more trouble thank goodness.

      The most important thing is to drink plenty of fluid.

      Ideally 6 - 8 mugs a day. Mainly just water.

      Hope your pcnl is as successful as mine was.

      Take care and keep in touch

      Sarah xxx

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  • Posted

    Hi, Lizzy.

    I'm so sorry for your odyssey. Any stone, and any treatment for one, is hard to deal with. I wish you nothing but good luck with your remaining two procedures.

    For me, although a lithotripsy was no walk in the park, it was nothing compared to a cystoscopy (specifically the post-surgical period). But everyone's experience is different, of course.

    Sending healing thoughts your way...


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  • Posted

    I haven't been on here in a long time, but I have had multiple stone procedures. The shockwave lithotripsy should not be overly painful. I'm not sure why you arent being given IV pain meds during it. when I had mine, I had a nurse monitoring me the entire time it was going on and administering dilauded and assorted pain medications to keep me as comfortable as possible. I didn't take any over the counter

    pain meds. It was still uncomfortable, but not nearly as bad as it would have been without the IV pain medications. I'm also surprised they are doing three lithotripsy procedures for a stone so small. Seems like a ureteroscopy would be a more affordable and less traumatic experience. The stent is usually the worst part, but they don't always place them. I didn't get one with my last ureteroscopy and my stone was almost 1 cm. They sedated me, removed the stone and I went home with no pain or discomfort (I had a stent with my first ureteroscopy and it was very unpleasant, but can be controlled with medication).

    I personally could pass a 3mm stone without intervention. I passed six of that size on one week. Their treatment plan sounds a bit aggressive to me (and costly). The one lithotripsy I had was for an almost 2cm stone and I only needed one treatment. That cost close to double what my ureteroscopy cost (I live in the states, so it might be different where you are).

    I would ask about IV pain meds for your next treatment. That's common practice here. Good luck and I'm sorry you are being unnecessarily tortured.

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    • Posted


      i'm surprised they did a ureterscopy for a 2 cm stone. i hav a stone in each kidney that is close to that and they are doing the keyhole surgery. they acted like that bc of the size, they needed to go in thru my back. Hav u ever had one of those?

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    • Posted

      They did the shockwave lithotripsy for my 2cm stone. They don't usually do ureteroscopy for stones that big, but I had two separate ureteroscopy's for stones smaller than 1 cm.

      The shockwave lithotripsy was highly effective for my 2cm stone and I only needed one treatment. They definitely need to be giving a twilight sedation for it at least...and strong pain medication through IV. It's too painful to put someone through without it.

      I've talked to people that have had keyhole. Not sure what would make it better than a lithotripsy, though. The woman I know that had it done had a gigantic 4cm stone. Your doctor must have a reason for choosing surgery, though.

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    • Posted

      i plan to see my doc on wednesday. i havent seen him since the ct scan confirmed i had two stones instead of the one he cud see on the xray. my colon was in the way of the other one being seen. i have went septic two seprarate times bc of stones and they werent even as big as these. They were obstructing though. im not sure of the reasons hes doing pcnl over lithotripsy. maybe he will tell me on wednesday.

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  • Posted

    thank you all for your replies!

    im having the shock wave lithotripsy ESWL

    the reason they are treating the 3mm stone is because it is very symptomatic and the location is quite high up in the kidney. I've had this stone for a couple of years and it doesnt seem to be passing, even though i drink loads of water every day.

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