What are the treatments available to remove the stones?
There is a general misconception that childhood stones always requires open surgery. Like adults children also can be treated without open surgery. In modern medicine facilities are available to break stones and 80% are removed without open surgery. For this it is essential to consult a paediatric urologist trained in this field.
When the stone is present in the bladder, it can be removed with the help of an endoscope. Endoscope is a small tube with a camera. It is passed via the urinary passage and the stones are grasped with small grabbers. Bigger stones can be broken with the help of a technique called lithotripsy. As children won’t like these and won’t stay still, they need a general anesthesia. To prevent blockage by broken stone pieces, a small tube called stent is left for 2-3 weeks.
Breaking Stones without Surgery
A technique called ESWL (Extra Corporeal Shockwave Lithotripsy) uses sound waves to break stone. With the help of an x-ray or a scan the stone is focused. ESWL machine breaks the stone in less than an hour. ESWL uses focused sound waves of high intensity to break the stones. Sometimes a second sitting may be required for complete stone clearance. In this treatment, children can return home with a couple of days. Small children need general anesthesia, as they have to lie still for the procedure and also may not tolerate pain that they may experience with the procedure.