Tuesday, August 2, 2022

It's time for the kidney stones to move out

In January of this year, I went to my OB/GYN for a routine checkup, and was told that I needed to see a Urologist due to some pain I experienced while she was pushing on my bladder. About two weeks later, I sat in the Urologist office talking about how often I relieve myself. He was shocked about the high number per hour, so he ordered a CT scan to be done, with and without dye. 

Enter kidney stone pain. This is the moment that woke me up in the middle of the night. I was crying on the floor in pain, totally unaware at that time what was happening. And just as soon as the pain came, it went. Then two days later, it was back with a vengeance. This time, I went to Urgent Care because I was convinced I had a bladder or kidney infection. They ran tests and determined I didn't have any infection, but sent me home with an antibiotic anyway, since there was a sign of blood in the urine. (Side note: they did absolutely nothing to relieve the pain, and told me I didn't need pain meds.) Did they think I was some junkie just there to get pills? I still don't understand what happened in that Urgent Care. 

Two days later I ended up in the Emergency Room because the pain was so bad, I was vomiting. The first thing they did was TAKE. THE. PAIN. AWAY. 

Three CT scans and two ultrasounds later, it was discovered I have eleven kidney stones on the left, and four on the right. After a couple discussions with the Urologist, and one failed procedure in the office, it was decided that it's best to have the stones removed. 

Fast forward to today. It's day six of recovery from surgery, and it sucks. Here's exactly what I had done...

šŸ’„Left ureteroscopy with laser lithotripsy

šŸ’„Cystoscopic placement of a bilateral ureteral stents (6-French x 24cm)

šŸ’„Bilateral retrograde pyelograms

šŸ’„Bladder biopsy

He collected one of the larger stones so it could be evaluated. I'm very interested to hear what I've drank or eaten all these years to create so many stones. If I had to guess, I'd say tea and salt. 

All the information I was given, said I should be back to every day activities within 1-2 days. I cannot, for one second, imagine this. The pain I'm having in my bladder, flanks, and urine stream six days later, is almost crippling to me. The urgency and frequency at which I need to urinate, makes it so difficult to drive any distance from home without searching for a bathroom. My drive to work is an hour. That's too long for me to hold my urine back. And even if I go two hours without drinking anything, I'm still sitting on the toilet, only this time, a couple of drops come out - with blood - because there's no water to help push stuff through. And that hurts waaaay more. 

I have a follow up appointment to have the stents removed in a few weeks. Still tbd on how this is going to happen. The doctor seems to think he's gonna be able to pull out the stents IN HIS OFFICE using just a local numbing agent - a Cystoscopy. This procedure failed last time in his office, so I've requested to be put under general anesthesia again. 

I guess we'll see what happens. Until then, take care of your kidneys. You only have two, and they're pretty amazing organs. 

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