If you don’t already know how long it takes to pass a kidney stone and you’re reading this, then pain is probably radiating throughout your groin and you’re chewing on your dog’s rawhide bone to cope. No? Excellent! A healthy curiosity is a good habit and this article will help prepare you for what may be the most painful affliction of your life should you become one of the unlucky that has to pass a kidney stone.
According to the Mayo Clinic, it takes three days to several months for a kidney stone to pass through the human body and largely depends on the size of the stone. A stone travels from the kidney where it was formed through the urinary tract via your urine. Kidney stones under four millimeters in diameter may pass through the body unnoticed or with minor symptoms that make you think you better ease off on the hot wings for a while. Kidney stones over four millimeters in diameter will cause pain ranging from the level of “annoying paper cut that I can’t stop thinking about” to severe pain eliciting the “someone take me out back and shoot me” response as the stone grinds to a halt mid journey. If symptoms like these present themselves, then you need to pay a visit to your favorite urologist.
The urologist has several tricks up his sleeve to deal with the unwilling kidney stone. A common tactic is the use of sound pulses to break up larger kidney stones into smaller ones that will fit through the urethra. Worst case scenario is a surgical operation to remove kidney stones that cannot be broken up. The largest kidney stone on record, weighing over one and a quarter pounds, was surgically removed from a dude in Pakistan in June 2008.