Riding A Roller Coaster Can Help Get Rid Of Kidney Stones, Study Finds
As weird as it may sound, doctors may soon start prescribing trips to Disney World after researchers proved that taking a ride on one of Disney’s most amazing roller coasters can help pass kidney stones out of the body.
The study, which was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, was inspired by hundreds of reports from people claiming they’ve passed their kidney stones after taking a ride on the Magic Kingdom’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
David Wartinger, a professor emeritus in the Department of Osteopathic Surgical Specialties and the leader of the study, said:
“Basically, I had patients telling me that after riding a particular roller coaster at Walt Disney World, they were able to pass their kidney stone,” Wartinger said. “I even had one patient say he passed three different stones after riding multiple times.”
In order to investigate how reliable these claims were, Wartinger created a 3D model of that particular patient’s kidney. The 3D kidney model was then filled with urine and three kidney stones no larger than 4 millimeters were inserted into the replica’s upper, middle, and lower passageways. The whole model was then put in a backpack and set to ride on Thunder Mountain 20 times.
Incredibly, he found that the kidney stones were dislodged on all 20 rides. The stones that were placed in the kidney’s upper passage showed a 100 percent passage rate, while those in the lower passageways were somewhat more stubborn.
He also found that sitting in the back of the roller coaster caused a passage rate of two in three, while sitting in the front caused a passage rate of one in six.
“In all, we used 174 kidney stones of varying shapes, sizes, and weights to see if each model worked on the same ride and on two other roller coasters,” Wartinger said. “Big Thunder Mountain was the only one that worked. We tried Space Mountain and Aerosmith’s Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and both failed.”
Since the cost of treating kidney stones could reach anywhere between $5,000 to $10,000, Wartinger added:
“You need to heed the warnings before going on a roller coaster,” he advised. “If you have a kidney stone, but are otherwise healthy and meet the requirements of the ride, patients should try it. It’s definitely a lower-cost alternative to health care.”
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