Excellence In Urological Care In South Australia

Ureteroscopy and Laser Stone

What is Ureteroscopy?

  • Examination of the upper urinary tract with a small calibre telescope
  • The telescope is passed through the urethra and bladder, into the ureter to locate the stone
  • An optical fiber is passed through the telescope to transmit LASER energy to the stone which fragments it into dust
  • A small “basket” may be used to retrieve stone fragments for chemical analysis

Why do I need this?

You have a stone in your ureter, less than 2 cm in size, which may be causing pain, obstruction, bleeding or infection

How long does it take?

30 – 60 minutes under a general anesthetic, depending on the stone size, location, and hardness

What are the risks?

  • Infection in your urine or blood (sepsis) – antibiotics are given
  • Need for a second procedure – if the ureter is too narrow to pass the telescope, vision is poor due to bleeding or the stone is very large and hard. A stent tube is inserted and the procedure is repeated 2 weeks later
  • Ureteral injury – a stent tube is inserted to allow healing, or rarely an open operation in needed

What can I expect after surgery?

  • When you wake up you will usually have a catheter in your bladder and an internal stent tube
  • The stent is a temporary tube which passes between your kidney and bladder and allows drainage while there is swelling present
  • Stents may cause the following symptoms;
    • flank pain while urinating
    • urinary frequency
    • a feeling of incomplete bladder emptying
  • The stent is removed 1 – 2 weeks later under local anesthetic in our day surgery, and these symptoms resolve immediately

The following day, the catheter is removed and you can go home once you have passed urine