Procedures

Shock Wave Lithotripsy for Kidney Stones in Tyler, TX

Many individuals will encounter painful kidney stones at some point in their lifetime, and shock wave lithotripsy (SWL) is an excellent way to break up these stones without requiring any type of surgery to be performed. Although its title may sound rather intimidating, shock wave lithotripsy is a very simple procedure that is frequently performed by urologists like Dr. Williams.

How ESWL Works

Patients will begin by lying on their back with a water-filled cushion placed underneath them for the shock waves to travel through safely. Dr. Williams will give a sedative or local anesthetic to help keep the individual comfortable during their SWL.

Using X-ray or ultrasound imaging, Dr. Williams will identify the precise location of the kidney stone(s) and begin to target this area for the next 30-45 minutes. During this time, the kidney stone is slowly broken down into tiny fragments as 1-2 shock waves are administered from outside the patient’s body. The procedure is not overly painful, but there will be some discomfort, and patients will be asked to lie still throughout the treatment process. If this becomes difficult, patients need to communicate with Dr. Williams about any issues that you experience during the procedure. Additional anesthetics can often be given to improve the patient’s comfort level.

Meet Our Urologist


R. Clay Williams, D.O. is board-certified by the American Board of Urology and has been practicing urology in Tyler, TX since 2005. With over 15 years of experience treating kidney stones, Dr. Williams has the knowledge, care, expertise, and technology patients look for in a urologist. If you’re looking for a surgery-free option to treat your kidney stones, then Dr. Williams and may be able to help using shock wave lithotripsy. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment by calling (903) 262-3900 or request an appointment through our secure online form. We’re located just a short drive from Longview, Jacksonville, Mineola, Sulphur Springs, Marshall, and Kilgore.

No Hospital Stay Needed

Unlike with surgery, shock wave lithotripsy is performed on an outpatient basis, meaning that patients can return home shortly after their procedure is complete. Before heading home, patients will be instructed to:

    • Drink plenty of fluids to help their stone fragments pass
    • Strain their urine for stone fragments that can be analyzed by Dr. Williams
    • Take pain medication or antibiotics as prescribed by Dr. Williams
    • Attend follow up appointments to review symptoms and determine if the stone has passed

Normal Side Effects

Many patients become alarmed when they notice a red tinge to their urinary in the days following shock wave lithotripsy. It is perfectly normal for a small amount of blood to appear, and the patient is also likely to notice bruising at the treatment site as well as mild back pain. All of these effects should dissipate over a few days but should be addressed by Dr. Williams if they begin to worsen.

Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy has proven effective in 70-90% of all cases after three months. However, it is not a guarantee for every individual with kidney stones, and some large fragments from SWL may require further treatment from Dr. Williams to have them broken down further or removed from the body.

Schedule an Appointment in Tyler, TX

If you are suffering from symptoms commonly associated with kidney stones in the Tyler, TX area, contact urologist R. Clay Williams, D.O. today at (903) 262-3900 or request an appointment through our secure online form. We are just a short drive from Longview, Jacksonville, Mineola, Sulphur Springs, Marshall, and Kilgore.

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