Passing A Kidney Stone



Symptoms and Diagnosis

Types of Stones

Dietary Prevention

Xray/ CT Scan/ Ultrasound/ IVP

Surgical Removal/ Lithotripsy

Causes of Stones

Genetic Causes

Medical Diseases


Passing A Stone




Author Information



Will The Stone Pass??? Most kidney stones which start to pass will eventually come out spontaneously.  Factors that predict the likelikhood that the stone will pass include the kidney stone size and location.  Small stones are more likely to continue moving and eventually come out.  If the stone has moved to the end of the ureter (the tube linking the kidney and bladder), it is also more likely to come out.

Waiting For It To Come Out: While you and your doctor wait expectantly for the stone to pass, often times pain killers including Tylenol 3, Percocet, or, Motrin, or Vicodin are prescribed.  Copious consumption of  liquids is recommended to increase urine flow in the hope this will help get the stone moving.

Medications To Help Get The Stone Out: The medicine Tamsulosin (Flomax) may help stones to pass.  It may even help relieve some of the pain associated with passing a stone.  This medicine is typically used for men with enlarged prostates.  It also works on muscles of the ureter to decrease the spasm.  This spasm is the cause of the pain and nausea that occurs when passing a stone.

What If I Need Surgery:   If the stone does not pass, a urologist may need to perform an invasive procedure to remove the stone.  This can include passing a catheter into the bladder and then up the ureter to remove it or break it apart with a laser.  Sometimes the stone is left in place and a stent/tube is placed in the ureter.  Typically if a person is having fevers and  appears to have an infection a stent/tube will be placed in the ureter to relieve the blockage caused by the stone.  Once the infection has been adequately treated then the stent and stone can be removed.  An infection associated with a kidney stone can be a life threatening complication.


Note: The above statements are not recommendations for your care.  Anyone passing a stone should have individualized care from his/her physician.  The above statements are meant to help you understand recommendations which your physician might suggest.  This website should not sustitute for face to face professional advice.