Q. Is there any way to make passing a kidney stone less painful? I went from uncomfortable to unbearable pain within a couple of hours.
The emergency room doctors gave me narcotic pain relievers but nothing to speed the stone out. If this ever happens again I’d like something to help move the stone along.

A. If surgery is not necessary to remove the stone, there is one treatment that may be helpful. The same drug that is used to ease symptoms of prostate enlargement, Flomax (tamsulosin), may facilitate passage of kidney stones (Current Opinion in Urology, March, 2008).
Shock wave treatment (lithotripsy) is sometimes used to break kidney stones into smaller pieces. Flomax has been used in combination with lithotripsy to help the smaller stones move. Not all studies show that the drug is effective, however, so you will need to discuss this approach with your urologist.

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  1. mb

    regarding flomax(tamsulosin) my husband was taking first 2 a day then reduced He is in his 80’s)after surgeries they left the catheter in too long-he has urine retention-the flomax along with proscar(finasteride) helped this ,BUT the flomax(as Md later found) was causing very low BP and faintness.He is now off flomax.and has no more weak spells(syncope)-with drugs its a game of benefit VS risk-as the old sahying goes”if it’s not broke don’t fix it)”

  2. DA

    My husband use to have kidney stones but hasn’t had any in years. He takes 2 250 mg of magnesiun oxide pills (not cheleated) and 1 100 mg of B6 pill every day. This keeps them from forming. In his case when he developed a single kidney stone after having 2 kidney stones at once a few years prior, one on both sides I started him on the magnesium and B6 when he got to the doctors office to have the stone blasted it wasn’t there any more it had dissolved.
    We have also told our pastor and hair dresser about this formula and they stopped having issues with kidney stones also. My dad took the magnesium oxide also when he was alive because he use to have them a lot. A doctor took pity on him and told him about the magnesium oxide.
    When he started taking the magnesium he never had another kidney stone. My husband will take these pills for the rest of his life so that he doesn’t get any more kidney stones.

  3. LL

    hello. I recently had a ct scan that showed I had a large kidney stone on the right side. Bladder showed a problem also. I will undergo a scope test in a few day’s. I had a large stone removed back in 2007 and it was a nightmare.. Currently, I am worried that the scope might show cancer. Should I consider getting another opinion? thank-you for your upcoming response..

  4. SueB

    My husband has had a couple of bouts of kidney stones especially when he is dehydrated. My boss at the time told me of his father who at one point, was having kidney stones weekly. A new doctor told him to try Beelith which is an over the counter mineral and vitamin combination. His father never had another stone. I bought some for my husband and for the last 8 years he has been free of these episodes. I am an RN.

  5. Greg Pharmacy Student

    Thank you for bringing this new drug study up.
    Medicine is COMPLEX this is good example of what your MD has to think about.
    This study DID NOT show physical harm to the public. Other studies HAVE supported using Flomax for stones others HAVE NOT as PP points out above. It may depend on the size and location of the stone.
    TO BE PRACTICAL, when the pain of a stone hits you most will take whatever the MD or DO suggests if it’s $ 80 or $ 4.
    To take things into YOUR OWN HANDS eat or drink fruits like grapefruit, lemons or limes which may prevent some stones from forming. See reference: http://bit.ly/9etNrV

  6. DJSchmidt

    I find the recommendations to “try this”, when made to the general public to be harmful. There is good evidence Flomax offers no real benefit.
    I think this sort of recommendation gets people expecting treatments that are ineffective. While Tamsulosin isn’t expensive, neither is it effective….
    Recommendations should be based on evidence. When recommending something to have no proven benefit, you need to clearly say that…

  7. Greg Pharmacy Student

    Increasing water intake 2 Liters a day will speed up how fast the stone passes.
    Flomax is a good choice, but can be costly. It’s about $ 80 for 10 capsules.
    Doxazosin 4 mg or Terazosin 5 mg are $ 4.00 for 10 tablets at Walmart AND result in passing the stone in the same amount of time (~ 6 days).
    Doxazosin and Terazosin can cause fainting especially when standing up quickly.

  8. K. C. Evans

    I have been there. The ER doctor gave me Reglan as a muscle relaxer. I found it to be an excellent adjunct to pain meds and PLENTY of fluids. Reglan relaxes the smooth muscle in the ureter, allowing the small stones to pass.

  9. Mel

    My husband has had kidney stones a couple of times. He has found that plain old ibuprofen worked well to decrease the inflammation and make it less painful. The major pain pills did not work for him.

  10. JC

    My husband had kidney stones and nothing worked until he tried Marshmallow root pills. If you can’t find this in pill form, the Marshmallow root tea is an alternative. We tried these as a last ditch effort after weeks of horrible pain and surgery was going to be next. I’ve also heard that slippery elm tea is helpful also.

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