Average of 50 people admitted with kidney stones every month
When it comes to kidney stones, Malta is facing several challenges namely limited stone analysis with only qualitative data available, the fact that certain tests are still being conducted abroad, that there is a lack of data related to epidemiology, genetics, and admissions as well as already very busy nephrology and urology clinics. Coupled with all this, there is also a general lack of awareness on this condition and how to avoid it.
All this is countered by statistics showing that 70% of those suffering with kidney stones have had to decrease work by 50% whereas 32% have experienced sexual dysfunction.
These were some of the most salient points that emerged from an event hosted recently by Vivian Corporation which discussed the treatment and management of kidney stones. The event also launched Devicare’s first of its kind product in Malta targeted for secondary prevention of kidney stones as well as for after-surgery prevention.
“Several patients remain unaware that unless stones are too big and surgery might be needed, complications of kidney stones can still be prevented, and that kidney stone management is possible without surgical removal,” says Daniela Magro, Urology Business Unit Lead at Vivian.
In Malta, kidney stones are the most common urology problem in emergency departments with 32 admissions every week. Of these, an average of 50 patients a month are admitted to hospital for more treatment such as interventional procedures and in total, in Malta urologists perform around 600 procedures annually to remove kidney stones.
“Although not a high number when compared to figures in other countries, this condition still involves pain for the patient, when this pain can be averted, not to mention the added hospital care and treatment which burdens the health system,” added Ms Magro.The event, which was attended by a group of thirty-five urologists, nephrologists and dieticians served to launch Vivian`s representation of DEVICARE in Malta, a Spanish biotech company already present in 65 countries round the world, which is dedicated to the development of pathbreaking medical treatments in urology.
In Spain, urological pathologies related to kidney stones affect more than 2.2 million people, besides the 325,000 new cases diagnosed every year according to data from the Spanish Ministry of Health,” added Rosendo Garganta, Founder and CEO of Devicare who was in Malta for the local launch of the Devicare brand.
“At Devicare, we are proud to be partnering with Vivian because we both share a very important philosophy to be committed to improve people’s quality of life by empowering patients through better medical care. Educating professionals and patients on the fact that kidney stones can be prevented empowers better medical advice and better lives,” added Mr Garganta.
The newly launched products for the treatment of kidney stones, LIT-CONTROL®, are specialised according to the type of stone a patient may have.
Lit-Control pH Balance helps to inhibit calcium crystal growth in urine without changing the urinary pH (a measure of its acidity), Lit- Control pH Up to inhibit uric acid crystal growth and increase the pH of the urine and Lit-Control pH Down to inhibit struvite crystal growth and decrease the pH of the urine.
Devicare also launched another product called CANOXIDIN®, an innovative solution designed to prevent the risks of complications associated with indwelled urological devices such as ureteral stents and bladder catheters.
Devicare’s new products may already be found in all leading pharmacies in Malta.
What you need to know about kidney stones
- Waste products in the blood occasionally form crystals that collect inside the kidneys. Over time, these crystals may build up to form a hard stone-like lump referred to as a kidney stone.
- Kidney stones can happen in one or both kidneys, often affecting people aged between 30 and 60 and can be the cause of very severe pain.
- Most kidney stones are small enough to be passed spontaneously without intervention, but larger stones may need to be broken up using different types of interventional procedures. Occasionally, keyhole surgery may be needed to directly remove very large kidney stones.
- Most of kidney stones can be prevented by drinking more water (2-3 litres per day) to increase the volume of urine produced and dilute the urine, reducing the amount of sodium, animal protein and oxalate intake, keeping a normal intake of calcium (around 1g per day), and doing regular exercise.