Hampshire’s leading medical professionals have developed a better way of treating children with kidney stones.

Surgeons at Southampton University hospitals are now using a less invasive procedure to remove large kidney stones in children which reduces complications and speeds up recovery.

Bhaskar Somani, a consultant urological surgeon, and colleague Stephen Griffin, who specialises in paediatric urology, have introduced ureteroscopy and laser stone fragmentation (URSL) routinely for young patients with stones larger than 1cm at Southampton Children’s Hospital.

In a study published in the Journal of Pediatric Urology, Mr Somani and Mr Griffin reported a URSL stone-free success rate of 89% among 18 patients aged between four to 15 years who underwent 35 procedures with no bleeding or any other complications and a hospital stay of only one day.

“This data demonstrates URSL is a viable alternative to PCNL for children with large kidney stones with no complications – including bleeding – and a much shorter hospital stay,” explained Mr Somani, who is also an associate professor of urology at the University of Southampton.

“Although the rate of stone clearance for both procedures is similar, any opportunity to expand the use of less invasive techniques, particularly among children, should be explored fully.”

Mr Somani said he and colleague Mr Griffin have now performed more than 75 URSL procedures on children.