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What Is Involved in Kidney Stent Removal?

After being prepped for removal of the stent, the doctor may thread a cystoscope through the urethra until it reaches the stent.
A urinalysis may be conducted to detect kidney stones.
A kidney stent may be temporarily used for kidney stones or other bladder obstructions.
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  • Written By: C.B. Fox
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 24 November 2014
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Kidney stent removal is a simple procedure that is usually done by a doctor. The stent can be removed under full anesthesia, though it is much more common for a doctor to use a local anesthetic because the patient is usually released immediately after the procedure. A cystoscope is often used to assist the doctor in removing the stent.

In most cases, kidney stent removal is completed under a local anesthetic. The doctor numbs the urethra with a topical anesthetic suspended in a fluid. Once the area is numb, the patient will not be able to feel any pain as the stent is removed.

There are two ways in which a kidney stent may be taken out of a patient. The first, which is the most common, involves the use of a cytoscope. This tool is fed into the patient's urinary tract, where it is used to assist the doctor in locating and removing the stent. The cytoscope contains a light and a camera on the end of it, so the doctor can see what he is doing while removing the stent.

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The second method of removing a kidney stent is to leave a string attached to the stent when it is inserted. This string comes out of the urethra and allows the doctor to pull the stent out at the proper time. The patient may also be under local anesthesia for this type of removal so that there is no pain or discomfort. It is possible for a patient to remove the stent on their own if a string is attached. The doctor will inform the patient when and how to remove the stent.

Kidney stent removal generally takes no more than a few minutes. Using a local anesthetic allows the patient to remain awake during the procedure and to drive home afterward. If the patient wishes to be placed under general anesthetic or if the doctor decides that he or she should, the patient will be released as soon as he wakes up, but he must have someone there to help him return home.

In order to promote healing and decrease the risk of forming kidney stones or urinary tract infections, kidney stent removal must be done within three months of inserting the stent. If the patient requires the stent for longer, it will need to be replaced at the three month mark. Insertion of the new stent requires a doctor and can be done at the same time as the removal of the kidney stent.

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anon941739
Post 5

Just take 10 mg oxycontin and you'll have no problems removing the ureter stent. It was minimally painful and you'll feel so much better after it's removed. Takes like 20-30 seconds. I had some ureter spasms a bit after it was removed which made me glad I loaded up on narcotics. By the way, I am a super baby when it comes to pain. If I can do it, anyone can do it.

StarJo
Post 4

Oh, I would definitely want to be out cold if I had to have a kidney stent removed! I would not want to be aware of anything being pulled from my body!

kylee07drg
Post 3

I have polycystic kidney disease, so I am have an increased risk of getting kidney stones. Last year, I had a huge one, and I had to wear a stent for awhile so that I could pass it.

I was terrified when I went back to have the stent taken out. I pictured myself screaming in agony as he pulled it slowly all the way out, but the reality was nothing like this.

The doctor put some really cold gel on the area, and this numbed it totally. He went up inside with a tube and pulled the thing right out, and it was all over. I had never been so relieved in all my life!

giddion
Post 2

@shell4life – Kidney stent removal pain is actually lessened when you can pull the string and remove it yourself. I've heard that having to get a doctor to go in and remove a stent of another kind is more painful, plus you have to be anesthetized. Any unnecessary anesthetization isn't good, because there can always be complications.

I've had the kind of stents with strings before, and I really didn't feel any pain when I removed them. Of course, I had been in so much pain already because of the stones, so I could have just built up a tolerance to it! However, I've heard everyone who has ever had this type of stent say that it doesn't hurt much at all to take it out yourself.

shell4life
Post 1

How painful is it to pull out a kidney stent yourself? My doctor told me that I could do this, because he inserted the kind with the string, but I'm really scared that it'll hurt too much.

However, I can't see the sense in going back to him so that he can remove something I'm supposed to be able to remove at home. I would just have to pay more money for the visit.

Should I be able to do this without excruciating pain? If there is pain, will a pain pill knock it out for me?

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