LASERS are being brought in by bosses at Doncaster Royal Infirmary – to zap painful kidney stones.
The hospital has introduced the high tech equipment to deal with what doctors say is a potentially painful condition without using invasive surgery.
Kidney stones are relatively common, with men aged between 30 and 60 most likely to be affected.
They form when crystals of calcium, ammonia, uric acid or other natural products build up over time.
Larger ones can cause severe pain and blockages, and may need to be broken up or removed in hospital.
The new laser at the Intake hospital delivers very short, intense pulses of infra-red light that can break down any form of stone into tiny fragments that can be flushed out.
Experts say it is less invasive than surgery, meaning patients recover more quickly and are less likely to experience complications.
The laser beam is delivered through a super-fine wire just 0.2 millimetres wide and flexible enough to rotate and reach stones of any size or location in the kidneys, kidney tubes or bladder.
That means it can be placed in direct contact with the stone, reducing the risk of any damage to surrounding tissue.
The procedure is performed under general anaesthetic and each treatment session lasts between 10 minutes and an hour.