Treating Kidney Stones with Chinese Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture

By Toni Eatros, MS, Dipl Ac, AP

Treating Kidney Stones with Chinese HerbalSummertime in Florida could lead to an increased chance of kidney stone formation.  Dehydration can cause minerals to crystalize in the kidneys, creating a painful condition called kidney stones.  The rate of adults with kidney stones has nearly doubled over the past 15 years.  Men are more likely than women to form kidney stones, although the gap has been narrowing.  The reasons for this rise in incidence is unknown.

Urinary stones (kidney and bladder stones) are two conditions that often occur together. In western medicine, if these two conditions are asymptomatic, treatment may not be necessary, as risks often outweigh the benefits. If symptomatic, alkalinization of the urine may be effective for uric acid stones, but not for other types of stones. In most cases, urinary stones (kidney and bladder stones) can only be treated with invasive treatments such as surgery or ultrasound disruption therapy.

According to traditional Chinese medicine, kidney and urinary stones are known as “shi lin,” which literally means dysuria due to stones.  Kidney and bladder stones are two conditions that are successfully treated with Chinese herbs and acupuncture with little to no adverse side effects. The combination of Chinese herbs to dissolve the stone and acupuncture to assist the body in expelling the stone is a fantastic alternative to waiting for the stone to get large enough to require invasive therapies or taking the “wait and see if you pass it” approach.

Dissolve (KS), a Chinese herbal formula by Evergreen Herbs, is one formula used to treat kidney stones.  Dissolve (KS) effectively dissolves and facilitates the passage of kidney and bladder stones, relieves pain, promotes normal urination and treats infection.  The duration of treatment is dependent on the number and size of the stones.  The herbs should be taken until the stones are dissolved or passed out in the urine.  This can be confirmed via X-ray or other imaging techniques.  This formula can also be used at a lower dosage to prevent the formation of new stones.

The three main herbs in this formula are extremely effective for the treatment of kidney and urinary stones, because they break apart existing stones and facilitate the elimination of substances that cause the formation of stones, such as calcium, sodium, and other minerals.  Several clinical studies concluded that these herbs demonstrate high effectiveness in treating kidney and urinary stones. In one study, 7 patients with urinary stones showed complete dissolution of the stones within ten days of herbal treatment. The presence of the stones before and the absence of the stones after treatment were confirmed by X-ray.

Restoration of normal urination is also important: many patients with a history of stones or current kidney or urinary stones may have difficult and painful urination. Dissolve (KS) contains four herbs that have excellent diuretic functions. They facilitate the passage of urine, reduce accumulation of water, and minimize difficulty with urination. Furthermore, they also increase the elimination of many minerals and salt so these substances do not adhere to the stones and further increase stone size.

While many patients with kidney and urinary stones may be asymptomatic, some experience pain ranging from mild back pain to severe renal colic.  Two herbs are added to this formula for their excellent pain-relieving properties. Chuan Lian Zi (Fructus Toosendan) is used to relieve the mild back pain while Yan Hu Suo (Rhizoma Corydalis) is used to alleviate the severe renal colic. Yan Hu Suo is one of the most effective and most potent herbs for treating pain. In fact, with the appropriate dose adjustment, the analgesic effect of Yan Hu Suo has been described to be comparable to morphine, with fewer side effects, no evidence of dependency, and 100% slower development of tolerance.  With the addition of these two herbs, one can successfully address the pain commonly associated with kidney and urinary stones.

Addressing the diet is of utmost importance when kidney stones are present.  During this process it is very important to drink 8 to 10 glasses of water a day.  Chronic dehydration increases the risk of stone formation.  Minimize the intake of salt to avoid water retention.  A diet high in salt will also increase the loss of calcium from the urine, and increase the risk of stone formation.  Vitamin A is essential to prevent formation and deposit of stones in the kidneys. Increase the consumption of foods high in vitamin A, such as carrots, yams, apricots, peaches, and mango.  Fruits and vegetables should be increased, while protein, eggs and milk should be reduced in the diet.

Join the others that are currently using the amazing combination of  Chinese herbal therapy, nutritional therapy and acupuncture offered at Acupuncture & Natural Health Solutions to feel better and avoid more invasive therapies to treating kidney stones.  Call now, 239-260-4566 or schedule online at

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