In the past couple of weeks, we’ve been talking about Walt Disney World’s latest holiday season price increase and why it’s not a surprise the House of Mouse is asking for more money from more guests after an influx of changes to the parks. However, according to a scientific study led by a professor of osteopathic surgical specialties, one could actually save a pretty penny on treatment costs needed for passing kidney stones if they simply rode one popular Disney World roller coaster.
While the study was conducted back in 2016, Popular Mechanics just revived the findings in a recent TikTok on the subject. Check it out:
Seven years prior, Michigan State University reported these findings when David Wartinger, a professor emeritus in the Department of Osteopathic Surgical Specialties at the university, tested if one could pass kidney stones while on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The study that was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association as well, found a 70% success rate in the passing of kidney stones on the popular Frontierland roller coaster, which first opened in Disneyland in 1979 (and is one of the California park’s best rides) before debuting in Orlando’s Magic Kingdom less than a year later.
Wartinger, who is a urologist based in Michigan and received his medical degree from the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine and has been practicing his field for over 20 years, decided to conduct the study after hearing from multiple patients that they were able to pass their kidney stones while riding the “wildest ride in the wilderness!”
The professor ventured to Walt Disney World and rode the ride with a backpack on that had a certified synthetic 3D model of a hollow kidney with three kidney stones in it. After riding the roller coaster 20 times, he verified that the ride could in fact cure kidney stones. Though, he had the most success when riding in the last car of the roller coaster.
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After his pilot study, Wartinger expanded his research on the subject by going back to the roller coaster with a few different kidney models attached to researchers. Those findings cemented his 70% theory, with a stunning 100% passage rate for kidney stones that were located in the upper chamber of the kidney.
The researchers tried to see if other roller coasters at Walt Disney World could replicate the same effect, but found other attractions like Space Mountain and Aerosmith’s Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster were “too fast and too violent” to pass kidney stones. It comes down to Big Thunder’s “rough and quick” track that has twists and turns but “no upside down or inverted movements” that could apparently save some people money on kidney stone treatment.
At the time, Wartinger said people should “heed the warnings before going on a roller coaster,” but if one is “otherwise healthy and meet the requirements of the ride, patients should try it.” He especially recommended it considering the price of a Walt Disney World ticket is “definitely a lower-cost alternative to health care.” Of course that depends on where you are in the world, but sounds like a relatively fun way to get rid of a medical condition!
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is also reportedly getting a movie based on the ride along with a host of upcoming Disney movies based on theme park rides on the way. We’ll keep you updated on that front here on CinemaBlend.