Specialist Services

Stone Surgery

Newcastle Urology at the Freeman Hospital performs the highest number of operations for urinary system stones in the North East, and is one of the leading units in the UK.

Stones develop from crystals which separate from the urine within the urinary system. Stones are common and approximately 1 in 10 people will form a stone at some point in their lives. They can be found in the kidneys, or in the ureter (the tube leading from the kidney to the bladder).

Kidney or ureteric stones often pass without any intervention required but larger stones may need to be fragmented with lithotripsy (shock wave treatment) or removed with an operation. Ureteroscopic stone removal is an operation which is done with a small-calibre telescope. The operation does not involve any cuts in the skin and a laser may be used to fragment the stone. These operations take place daily at Newcastle Urology with success rates in excess of 95% and a low risk of complications.

PCNL (percutaneous nephrolithotomy) is an operation to remove large stones (15mm or more) directly from the kidney. The advantage is that even very large stones are removed in a single operation although a small cut is required to allow passage of the telescope into the kidney. Compared to lithotripsy and ureteroscopic stone removal, PCNL is more invasive and requires a longer stay in hospital (usually 2-4 days). We perform approximately 120 PCNL operations annually at Newcastle Urology with high success rates.

Staff you are likely to meet

Our consultant urologists who specialise in stone surgery are Mr T J Dorkin, Mr T Hasan, Mr D Rix, Mr M Shaw and Mr D J Thomas. Please note that although your appointment is with a named consultant you may be seen by a member of their team.

Useful website

NHS Choices – Kidney Stones