Although most kidney stones pass on their own, your doctor may decide that surgery is the best treatment if you have stones lodged in the ureters, the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder; large or particularly painful kidney stones; stones causing an obstruction of urine flow; or stones resulting in bleeding or infection.
At NYU Langone, our doctors also frequently treat people with more advanced kidney stone conditions, such as staghorn stones, which are large and can be caused by infection, and bilateral stones, which develop simultaneously in both kidneys or in the ureters.
Our surgeons perform hundreds of kidney stone surgeries each year, many of which involve minimally invasive techniques that do not require a hospital stay. In fact, traditional or “open” surgery, as it is commonly known, is now rarely performed at NYU Langone for the treatment of kidney stones.
The goal in any kidney stone surgery is to treat all stones at once. However, some people with kidney stones require a staged treatment approach in which more than one surgery is needed to reduce or clear the stones.
At NYU Langone, the most common surgery to treat kidney stones is ureteroscopy with Holmium laser lithotripsy. This procedure is used to break up—and often remove—the stone fragments.
In this procedure, the surgeon inserts a narrow, flexible instrument calle