Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Symptoms Evaluation Treatment questions for doctor Complications Underlying Cause Anatomy

Bladder Stone Treatment

Treatment for a bladder stone usually includes increasing the intake of fluids. The resulting increase in urine production makes it more likely that the stone will pass from the bladder and through the urethra. In most cases, cystoscopy and lithotripsy are performed. A cystoscope is a flexible fiberoptic scope that is inserted through the urethra and into to bladder. Once in the bladder, lithotripsy breaks the stone into pieces. Once the stone is separated into pieces, they are removed with the cystoscope. Medications can help dissolve particular types of bladder stones, but the technique requires multiple bladder washings through a urinary catheter. Men with bladder stones who also have an enlarged prostate gland may benefit from prostate surgery, in order to open the passageway for the stone to pass.

Treatment of bladder stones may include:

  • Drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water a day to encourage the stone to pass from the bladder
  • Cystoscopy:
    • A flexible scope is inserted into the bladder
    • The stone is removed with the cystoscope
  • Lithotripsy for kidney stones:
    • High frequency sound waves break up the stone
  • Lithoclast:
    • Mechanical device that breaks up the stone
    • Used during cystoscopy
  • Laser:
    • Laser energy breaks up the stone
    • Used during cystoscopy
  • Medications that dissolve bladder stones:
    • Potassium citrate can help to dissolve uric acid stones
  • Surgery:
    • The bladder is accessed through the abdominal wall using and endoscope.
    • The stone is removed through incisions in the abdomen and bladder.

Bladder Stone Questions For Doctor

The following are some important questions to ask before and after the treatment of a bladder stone.

Questions to ask before treatment:

  • What are my treatment options?
    • Is surgery an option for me?
  • What are the risks associated with treatment?
  • Do I need to stay in the hospital?
    • How long will I be in the hospital?
  • What are the complications I should watch for?
  • How long will I be on medication?
  • What are the potential side effects of my medication?
  • Does my medication interact with nonprescription medicines or supplements?
  • Should I take my medication with food?

Questions to ask after treatment:
  • Do I need to change my diet?
  • Are there any medications or supplements I should avoid?
  • When can I resume my normal activities?
  • When can I return to work?
  • What else can I do to reduce my risk for having this problem again?
  • How often will I need to see my doctor for checkups?
  • What local support and other resources are available?

Continue to Bladder Stone Complications

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