Conservative stone treatment

Medical Expulsive Therapy (MET)

If your stone is likely to pass with urine, your doctor may prescribe drugs (so called alpha-blockers or nifedipine) to help you pass the stone faster and to limit pain while it moves. This is called Medical Expulsive Therapy (MET) and it is most effective for ureteral stones.

Alpha-blockers are not registered as drugs for stone removal (off-label), but they can be helpful when passing stones. If you want MET, your doctor will discuss the possible side-effects of the drugs with you.

If you are in a lot of pain, if you have an infection, or if your kidneys do not function well, MET is not an option. Your practitioner will discuss other treatment options with you.

During MET you should see your doctor regularly – how often depends on his or her recommendation. The doctor needs to check if the stone keeps moving and if your kidneys continue to function well.

Dissolving kidney or ureteral stones

If you suffer from uric acid stones, it may be possible to dissolve your stone. This is done by increasing the pH-value of your urine to make it alkaline rather than acidic. Oral medication like alkaline citrate or sodium bicarbonate is generally prescribed. At a pH-level of 7.0-7.2, the stone will decrease in size and may even dissolve completely. You can easily check the pH-value of your urine at home by using a dipstick test.