LOST kidney stone from GP to Lab?

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At beginning of May this year I've experienced excruciating pain, in waves, from my back left side (at belt height) towards left ovary and sometimes down the knee, 1-2 times a week (duration 2-3 hours). At GP was discovered blood in the urine and assumed UTI and given 1 week antibiotic and Paracetamol for pain.

After several episodes of pain I've ended up at A&E, with vomiting, difficulty urinating, blood in the little urine that I was producing, and had a CT scan that showed that a stone might have passed, the ureter being irritated. I’ve been kept overnight with Oramorph and Paracetamol next morning (24h pain free?!?!)  sent home with advice to exercise and drink liquids.

Symptoms came back several times (I gave up going to A&E after previous experience of hours of waiting in pain ...)  and had additional ultrasound scan (internal and external) to confirm there's no genital issues, sigmoid scan (partial colonoscopy) that came up with IBS, blood test for UTI (clean), but still with same excruciating bouts of pain. I'm 36, healthy woman, beside this ... stones.

On 21 July with the morning urine the stone came out after being stuck in the bladder (that’s how I felt, the pain was now only in the bladder every time when urinating). Next day I’ve take it to our GP who sent it to the lab, photo attached.

I’ve been pain free for 4-5 weeks after, but the pain is back now, almost every day with a third of previous intensity. I’m scared that another stone is making its way down slowly and have no idea of treatment or diet, not knowing which type of stone it was.

On 30 September, after multiple calls to the GP office, got the call to tell me that the stone never arrived to the lab (apologies included).

Can anybody help me? What am I supposed to do?

Thank you

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5 Replies

  • Posted

    That's a vicious looking photo of a stone that you sent with your message so I sympathise with you over the pain that it would have caused.

    80% of stones are calcium based but, as yours never arrived at the lab, you can't be sure if yours was calcium. Still, it would not do much harm to check your diet to see if you are over-dosing on calcium in your diet. Do you, for example, take calcium supplement tablets to maintain bone density? Have a think about what you eat and look up on the web whether they are high-calcium products.

    You will still need some calcium in your diet though, so moderation is the key, and maybe you will need some expert advice so ask your GP for advice/referral.

    I see that part of the advice was to exercise. Exercising might cause you to become dehydrated and this leads to concentrated urine with a higher risk of stones forming. Soldiers in the desert are at a higher risk of kidney stones because they perspire so much fluid. Therefore, exercise should be accompanied by a high intake of fluid.

    Drink lots of water is always good advice. This helps to flush out the stone fragments and to prevent over-concentrated urine crystallising into new stones. Your urine should not be dark at all.

    I take a little PLJ (pure lemon juice) in my water because lemon juice is said to dissolve calcium. You will come across other recommendations on the web for dissolving kidney stones naturally.

    I understand that pain comes when a stone blocks the ureter or moves through it so pain might mean that something is trying to pass. But, if you can't pass water at all, this might become an emergency so don't let up on your GP or A&E.

    If you can live with the pain, your GP might prescribe painkillers until what's left finally passes. I found that Diclofenac was very good so ask about getting some of those.

    Good luck.

    Keep us posted as to how you get on.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply sheffnet, I'll start adding lemon juice from today. (I've heard of a 3 day only lemon juice for kidney stone flush, but my tummy said ... no way, to much acid).

      I am a 2 cup coffee (+ sweetener and milk) drinker and I've been told coffee works against calcium. I'm good with all veg and fruit, all in moderation, fresh and canned, I drink alcohol very rarely.

      I used to take metformin 3/day for polycystic ovaries, but after last genital scan ovaries looked great (2 years after cysts being burned in lap surgery) I stopped them (they were making my life horrible).

      My wonder is: should I make a formal complaint?

      How often do GP samples get lost?

      Who is to be blamed? GP? Courier? Lab?

      Thanks again

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  • Posted

    Hmm, I'd devote your energies to looking after yourself instead of trying to discover who lost your stone. It could be anyone's fault and all parties will deny it was them. You'll just go round in circles.

    There's some information on here about kidney stones that you will find useful -

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/patientinstructions/000135.htm

    I notice a sentence "Limit your coffee, tea, and cola to 1 or 2 cups a day. Caffeine may cause you to lose fluid too quickly, and that can make you dehydrated." There are also some other recommendations about good/bad food and drink assess.

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  • Posted

    Ow!  The idea of lemon juice is presumably that the urine will become acid and eat the [calcium] stone.  However the body is very good about regulating its own ph balances and I very much doubt if such a simple remedy would work. If it did the urologists would tell you to do it!

    People are desparate to find "simple" cures for complex conditions.  There was one going round some while ago that taking large quantities of bicarb daily would "cure" cancer by making the blood alkaline! 

    As to the sample getting lost it is unfortunate and yes you could make a formal complaint but where would it get you?  As you identify where did it get lost? 

    Best wishes for a permanent cure

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    • Posted

      The surgeon from A&E told me that the probability of having a 2nd one in the following year is really high.

      I also have family history with kidney issues, mom with stones too.

      I'm angrier because I've done my best to produce such "jewel" without surgery and they couldn’t take care of it … and they cannot point me towards a diet … or appropriate medication.

      Allegedly got lost between the GP and the Lab … I assume courier (specialized courier with swab samples etc.) …

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