Megabass Lithotripsy

Mona M. left her home in Monrovia very early on a Monday morning. Her surgery was scheduled for 7:00am. It would be a simple procedure, kidney stones. It would relieve the sharp, piercing pain. Nonetheless, Mona was nervous.

Her husband, Floyd, pointed the Cressida into the traffic on South Main. As they came to a stop light, it began, an imperceptible vibration that rippled the Sanka in Floyd’s coffee cup. As a red Mustang approached, the vibration increased, a reoccurring low-frequency wave, inaudible components of percussion that are felt, not heard. Floyd looked up at the light, hoping it would change before the Mustang came any nearer. It was too late. The full rap of the East Side Gang came to bear on the Cressida. Pulses cut through the M’s, travelling from the frame of the vehicle, through the toes of Mona’s wedgies, clear up to her ears. She clamped her hands on them. It helped to dull the message, but not the Megabass that traveled by induction inside her skull.

Lloyd’s hands gripped the wheel, hoping to stop the vibrations, looking helplessly over at Mona. Finally, the light changed and the Mustang pulled away, trailing the thrumming, rattling bass behind. Lloyd was late to the hospital because he had slowed down, trying not to catch up with the throbbing Mustang.

They wheeled Mona away to prepare her for her operation and Floyd found a chair in the waiting room. He began to doze behind the May Redbook. Moments later, he abruptly awoke. Mona stood before him, purse in hand.

"They’re gone," Mona said, "the stones have disappeared."

In his follow-up exam, Mona’s physician noted that she had experienced pain before leaving for the hospital. The stones had dissolved along the way. Floyd remembered the red Mustang just as they were leaving the office.

Dr. Felix Knopke earned his diploma in Grenada. He preferred research to seeing patients and his thick glasses had carved a considerable valley in the bridge of his nose. He read Mona’s report with great interest. He took a jar of kidney stones out of the lab refrigerator.

(Left: Dr Knopke prepares a volunteer gallstones patient.)

Clamping on a pair of ear protectors, Dr. Knopke slid a CD into the player. At 236 decibels, the stones began to jump. Something was missing here, a combination of circumstances, certain kinds of music, the automotive environment, exhaust fumes.

Presently, there are research plans that will place mid-sized Japanese vehicles on the streets of Los Angeles containing one or more volunteer patients. Once Mona’s good fortune has been duplicated, different combinations of vehicles and music may be tried. Knopke has obtained promising results from his album of "Riverdance," and a Heavy D CD. "M.C. Hammer is planning a comeback with a pellet-busting album of hits from the ‘Stones," Dr. Knopke reported.

Because approval by the F.D.A. is still pending, your physician, even Dr. Knopke cannot prescribe Freeway Lithotripsy for your gallstones. It is not wise to postpone treatment, either, but what would keep you from taking a detour down Van Nuys Boulevard on your way to the hospital?

(The above is for information purposes only and cannot be verified by OutaDaLoop.)

Return to "Loop Literature"