Lithotripsy

Care After

Refer to this sheet for the next few weeks. These discharge instructions provide you with general information on caring for yourself after you leave the hospital. Your caregiver may also give you specific instructions. Your treatment has been planned according to the most current medical practices available, but unavoidable complications sometimes occur. If you have any problems or questions after discharge, please call your caregiver.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

  • The recovery time will vary with the procedure done.

  • You will be taken to the recovery area. A nurse will watch and check your progress. Once you are awake, stable, and taking fluids well, you will be allowed to go home as long as there are no problems.

  • Your urine may have a red tinge for a few days after treatment. Blood loss is usually minimal.

  • You may have soreness in the back or flank area. This usually goes away after a few days. The procedure can cause blotches or bruises on the back where the pressure wave enters the skin. These marks usually cause only minimal discomfort and should disappear in a short time.

  • Stone fragments should begin to pass within 24 hours of treatment. However, a delayed passage is not unusual.

  • You may have pain, discomfort, and feel sick to your stomach (nauseous) when the crushed (pulverized) fragments of stone are passed down the tube from the kidney to the bladder. Stone fragments can pass soon after the procedure and may last for up to 4 to 8 weeks.

  • A small number of patients may have severe pain when stone fragments are not able to pass, which leads to an obstruction.

  • If your stone is greater than 1 inch/2.5 centimeters in diameter or if you have multiple stones that have a combined diameter greater than 1 inch/2.5 centimeters, you may require more than 1 treatment.

  • You must have someone drive you home.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Rest at home until you feel your energy improving.

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort, or fever as directed by your caregiver. Depending on the type of lithotripsy, you may need to take medicines (antibiotics) that kill germs and anti-inflammatory medicines for a few days.

  • Drink enough water and fluids to keep your urine clear or pale yellow. This helps "flush" your kidneys. It helps pass any remaining pieces of stone and prevents stones from coming back.

  • Most people can resume daily activities within 1 or 2 days after standard lithotripsy. It can take longer to recover from laser and percutaneous lithotripsy.

  • If the stones are in your urinary system, you may be asked to strain your urine at home to look for stones. Any stones that are found can be sent to a medical lab for examination.

  • Visit your caregiver for a follow-up appointment in a few weeks. Your doctor may remove your stent if you have one. Your caregiver will also check to see whether stone particles still remain.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • Your pain is not relieved by medicine.

  • You have a lasting nauseous feeling.

  • You feel there is too much blood in the urine.

  • You develop persistent problems with frequent and/or painful urination that does not at least partially improve after 2 days following the procedure.

  • You have a congested cough.

  • You feel lightheaded.

  • You develop a rash or any other signs that might suggest an allergic problem.

  • You develop any reaction or side effects to your medicine(s).

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You experience severe back and/or flank pain.

  • You see nothing but blood when you urinate.

  • You cannot pass any urine at all.

  • You have a fever.

  • You develop shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, or chest pain.

  • You develop vomiting that will not stop after 6 to 8 hours.

  • You have a fainting episode.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.