Focused Ultrasound Could Push Out Kidney Stones

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Space researchers are developing an interesting new ultrasound technology that could push out a kidney stone with far less pain than traditional methods of passing a stone naturally.

Astronauts are more susceptible to kidney stones because it’s difficult to hydrate and zero gravity degrades bone putting more salt in the urine. If a kidney stone doesn’t pass, surgery could be needed and performing surgery in space isn’t easy. That’s where the interest of space exploration comes in.

Scientists with the National Space Biomedical Research Institute are developing the new technology that uses focused ultrasound to push the stone out. If it works well, physicians could use it here on earth.

For a press release describing the project click here.