Friday, May 24, 2019
A possible solution for kidney stones?
As regular readers know, I've been plagued with kidney stones since 2015. Most recently, they - or, rather, the pain they caused - prevented me from writing from roughly the middle of last year until March this year. I find the creative part of my brain simply shuts down when the pain level gets too great. That's no fun, and it makes putting food on the table a bit tricky, too.
I've been to several doctors, both general physicians and urologists, to see what could be done. They uniformly assured me that once kidney stones become established, there are three - and only three - possible solutions. The first is for the body to pass the stone itself; the second is lithotripsy; and the third is an ureteroscopy. Both medical procedures are typically day surgeries. I'm here to tell you, the last option is extremely painful for several days afterwards - worse than the kidney stone, at least in my case.
There are some preventive measures recommended, such as drinking at least two quarts/liters of liquid per day to keep the urine stream diluted. However, these didn't seem to help in my case; and having experienced both types of medical intervention, I was highly motivated to find another way. (Besides, the ongoing cost of such procedures isn't negligible, to put it mildly, even if you have medical insurance!)
I therefore started to research the problem, and came up with two non-medical remedies, one a traditional South American herbal treatment, the other a calcium "protector" that was alleged to stop the formation of new calcium crystals in the kidneys. Since I had nothing to lose but my pain, I decided to try both.
The first I tried was Chanca Piedra, a South American herb colloquially known as "stone breaker". Quite apart from my online research, an Ecuadorian woman (herself a kidney stone sufferer) assured Miss D. that it really was a folk remedy in that country, and it really did work. Unfortunately, there are many different brands offering Chanca Piedra as an ingredient, some genuine, some not so much. It took a lot of checking user reviews, looking for scam alerts, and so on before I settled on this brand.
I took it in the recommended dosage for six weeks, and was encouraged to find that my kidney pain diminished measurably. It didn't go away completely, but it was much better than before. This motivated me to look at a second treatment, designed to prevent the formation of calcium crystals (the leading cause of kidney stones).
I stopped taking the Chanca Piedra and started the recommended daily dosage of Kidney C.O.P. Within two weeks, my kidney pain had disappeared entirely, and it hasn't come back.
I don't know that either treatment is "better" than the other, because they seem to work in different ways; but I'm convinced, on the basis of personal experience alone, that they dramatically decrease the symptoms of kidney stones in me. Only time will tell whether they can do so on a permanent basis, but so far, so good. I've settled on a pattern of taking Chanca Piedra for one month, then Kidney C.O.P. for the following month, before repeating the cycle. The former costs me about $10 for a month's treatment, and the latter about $30, but I regard that as cheap at the price compared to the pain of dealing with kidney stones.
I can't claim or guarantee that these have any therapeutic medical benefit, and their manufacturers offer the usual FDA-mandated disclaimers about their use. Nevertheless, they appear to have worked for me. If you suffer from kidney stones, particularly calcium-based ones, I suggest you may find them worth an extended trial - say, two months of each, alternating them each month. You may be as pleasantly surprised as I was.
(No, I'm not being compensated in any way for recommending them. I merely want to share a solution to excruciating kidney stone pain that has worked for me, and may therefore help those of my readers with the same problem.)