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Kidney Stones

Kidney Stones are actually minerals built up in the bladder that have coalesced into small "stones."

What are Kidney Stones?

Kidney Stones are actually minerals built up in the bladder that have coalesced into small "stones." It is more common among older men, but reports of women contracting this condition is increasing nowadays. Having this condition can be a painful and uncomfortable ordeal. Thankfully, there are several treatment options that are readily available.

Here at our kidney clinic, we specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of kidney stones; on top of a wide range of treatment services for disorders and diseases concerning the urological system.

Singapore Urologist, Michael was invited faculty at the USA national congress 2018. He is seen here with Prof James Lingeman whom he did a fellowship in Endourology in 1994.

How do I know if I have Kidney Stones?

The symptoms may not be felt right away, especially if they are very small. However, once they start acting up, you will be able to tell that something’s wrong.

Common symptoms that you may encounter include:

  • Discomfort and pain while urinating
  • Pain in the lower abdomen
  • Urinating more frequently than usual
  • Dark-coloured or abnormally cloudy urine
  • Blood mixed with urine

What causes Kidney Stones?

If you are experiencing most of the symptoms listed above, then you most likely have urinary stones. However, what could have caused it?

Also known as Renal Calculus, this condition usually occurs when normal chemicals in urine that typically prevent this condition, have stopped working. Moreover, your diet plays a large part in the situation – what you eat and drink may actually cause the formation of stones in your bladder and kidneys.

Some food that can cause this condition include:

  • Food high in oxalate such as beets, okra, chocolate, sweet potatoes, peanuts, soybean crackers, rhubarb, and spinach
  • High intake of calcium-rich foods such as milk, cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products

Nevertheless, this condition is more often caused by other underlying health problems, such as an enlarged prostate. Here are some health problems that are known to cause kidney stones:

  • Metabolic disorders such as hyperparathyroidism, hyperuricosuria, Cystinuria and hyperoxaluria
  • Kidney disorders such as cystic kidney diseases
  • Hereditary disease such as renal tubular acidosis – this is a condition wherein the kidneys fail to acidify the urine.
  • Inflammation of the bladder or Urinary tract infection – this can increase the chances of stones forming within the urinary tract
  • Prostate gland enlargement – If a man’s prostate is enlarged, it can disrupt the normal flow of urine within the urinary tract
  • Damaged Neurogenic bladder – this may hinder the normal flow and release of urine from the bladder

How do you treat Kidney Stones?

If you have detected them early while they are still small, you can simply drink more water, more regularly. This is usually enough to get rid of them naturally.

However, if the stones are already too large to pass naturally, its treatment will then involve breaking them down into smaller pieces or removing them surgically by your kidney specialist. Here are several treatments employed to remove them:

  • Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy - Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy (ESWL) is a procedure that uses shock waves in the treatment of kidney stones in the bladder. These shock waves break down stones into small pieces.
  • Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery - Retrograde Internal Surgery (RIRS) is a kidney stones surgery procedure done through a fibre-optic endoscope. The fibre-optic endoscope can pinpoint the location of kidney stones.
  • Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy - Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy (PCNL) is a procedure known as stone extraction. PCNL is a treatment technique for larger stones.
  • Laparoscopy - Laparoscopy is a non-invasive surgical procedure that uses small incisions to treat the condition.
  • Laser Lithotripsy - Laser Lithotripsy is a procedure done mostly in the lower ureteral stones using a ureteroscope. The ureteroscope breaks the stones into tiny pieces. These will eventually exit the body.

The treatment of kidney stones is one of the services offered by our kidney clinic. We also offer other specialised urology services and treatments including ESWL, retrograde intrarenal surgery, and laparoscopy.

If you suspect that you are suffering from this condition and it is affecting your day-to-day activities, do give us a call or set an appointment with kidney stones specialist, Dr Michael Wong at +65 6838 1212 today.

Stone Issue

kidney stones

Kidney stones are hard, crystallized deposits that form in the urinary system. Some stones are very small and passed naturally from the body through urine. Other stones are larger, causing severe pain and obstructing urine flow. Dislodged kidney stones can also damage the inner lining of the urinary tract, resulting in blood in urine. In more severe cases, kidney stones can cause urinary infections, and kidney damage or failure.

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Dr Michael Wong

Medical Director & Senior Consultant Urologist
FAMS (Urology), FICS (USA), FRCS (Edinburgh),
M Med (Surgery), MBBS (S’pore)

Dr Michael Wong is a Senior Consultant Urologist who is internationally recognized for his surgical expertise and academic contribution to the field of Urology, in particular the subspecialized field of minimally invasive Endourology.

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