Lunar cycle may have an effect on Shock Wave Lithotripsy related pain outcome
Objectives: We tried to investigate the effects of lunar phase on Shock Wave Lithotripsy (SWL) related pain. In addition, correlation of various clinical parameters with the pain perception during SWL procedure, were also investigated.
Methods: A total of 378 patients who underwent first SWL sessions for renal or ureteral stones were prospectively enrolled in the study. The degree of pain perception during the procedure was evaluated with 10-point visual analog scale (VAS) and pain questionnaires. The date of SWL was allocated to dates and times of lunar phases as: newmoon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbus, fullmoon, waning gibbus, last quarter and waning gibbus.
Results: Mean VAS scores in first quarter (2,41±1,06) were significantly lower when compared to mean VAS scores in waning crescent (3,58±1,83) and waning gibbus (3,42±1,98) (p=0,005 and 0,041, respectively). No statistically significant differences were observed when other lunar phases were compared between each other. Mean pain
scores were not affected from gender, age, body mass index (BMI) and stone characteristics (stone laterality, burden and location).
Conclusions: SWL procedure performed in first quarter of the lunar phase may become less painful. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study which evaluated the effect of lunar phase on post-SWL pain outcome. Thus, additional randomized studies with larger series may be more informative.
Keywords: lunar phase, lithotripsy, pain, predictive factors, urinary stones