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Understanding of Retrograde Intra Renal Surgery ( RIRS ) - Medstar Hospital


RIRS or Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery is an endoscopic surgery performed to remove renal stones by reaching the kidney from the ureter. RIRS procedure uses a viewing tube called fiber optic endoscope and a laser fiber – Holmium – to treat the renal stones. Once the large stone is removed, small fragments of the stones are taken off through stone baskets. In some cases, a stent may be pushed in the kidney to improve drainage. In this procedure, the Stone is crushed, or blasted by using a laser probe or can also be manually removed through forceps. The surgery is performed by a urologist who has specialized expertise in RIRS. During the procedure, the patient is given spinal or general anesthesia and the endoscope is inserted in the body through the urethra then into the kidney; the surgery does not involve any incisions and hence, has a very fast recovery time. With RIRS a vast majority of renal stones can be cleared without open surgery.


Moreover, with the recent technological developments in the management of renal stones, RIRS has emerged as a very reliable, safe and efficient method. The main purpose of a renal stone treatment is to clear the stones completely with minimum morbidity – RIRS clears renal stones through flexible ureterorenoscopy and lithotripters including holmium laser, ensuring no trace of stones are left. Moreover, advancement in related equipment’s such as guide-wires, ureteral access sheath and stone baskets have enhanced the effectiveness of the RIRS procedure. As of today, RIRS is a prime method of treatment for renal stones that are less than 2 cm and cannot be successfully treated via other methods.


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