07/26/2009 - Questions and Answers

Kidney stones and diabetes

By: Novoviva webmaster



My husband is due to have treatment for his kidney stones, but I've read somewhere that this can make his diabetes worse. Is this really so?



We would urge your husband to discuss both his conditions and pending treatment for kidney stones with his own doctor who knows his diabetic condition. Kidney stones can form in the urine regardless of whether the person is a diabetic or not. However, it is important to understand some factors about both diabetes, and shock wave lithotripsy, one of the treatment options for kidney stones, which apparently can be a " risk factor for the onset of diabetes type 2 and hypertension ( high blood pressure) during the later part of life"

It is important to note that your husband is already a diabetic and it is so that in type 2 diabetes, hypertension ( high blood pressure) is often present as part of the metabolic syndrome of insulin resistance. There are several different types of kidney stones just as there are several different types of treatment, and this particular treatment, shock wave lithotripsy, may perhaps cause no further risk factors, providing the blood sugars and blood pressure are kept under tight control, but this needs to be discussed with his own doctor who, as we have mentioned, knows his diabetic condition.

On April 20, 2006 it was announced that Mayo Clinic scientists are sounding an alert about side effects of shock wave lithotripsy: in a research study, they found this common therapy for kidney stones to significantly increase the risk for diabetes and high blood pressure during the later part of life. Risk for diabetes was related to the intensity of the treatment and quantity of the shock waves administered; hypertension was related to treatment of stones in Both kidneys

"This is a completely new finding," says Amy Krambeck, M.D., Mayo Clinic urology resident and lead study investigator. "This opens the eyes of the world of urology to the fact that high blood pressure and diabetes are potential side effects. We can't say with 100 percent certainty that the shock wave therapy for the kidney stones caused diabetes and hypertension, but the association was very strong. The risk of developing diabetes after shock wave lithotripsy is almost four times the risk of people with kidney stones treated with medicine, and the risk of developing high blood pressure is one and one-half times, which is a significant risk increase. Much more study is needed. In the meantime, there's no reason to stop using the machines for patients with large kidney stones".

The complications of diabetes are: heart /vascular disease, strokes, kidney failure, nerve damage, blindness, amputations and infections. These can be prevented to a large degree by good control of blood sugars, as well as prevention or control of blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels. This is accomplished by correct diet, regular and sufficient exercise, no smoking, and understanding of alcohol use.

Related Links
Living with Diabetes Successfully
Stress Management Helps Diabetes Control
Kidney stones
Shockwave therapy/diabetes and hypertension
Glucose control -benefits

Created on: 06/09/2006
Reviewed on: 07/26/2009

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