Hello Coaster Lover:
We have similar situations but actually reverse in order of "what came first"!
I had metastisized cancer first (prostate) that soon blocked both kidneys. I had been hospitalized three times for kidney failure in the past - but not since June of 2012.
Assumming you have two kidneys but only one functioning:
My left kidney is nearly worthless - but i have had an internal stent from the kidney to the bladder for 20-months now - even though it needs replacement every 6-months or so. The urologist is typically the person who places or replaces the stent. It is not done by major surgery - or cutting one open.
It may or may not be a consideration for you. It's existence does not create pain (except minor pain the first few days of placement). I do believe it alleviates some potential problems of a non-working kidney ... but that's for a Urologist or other to comment on.
My right kidney that works but with some difficulty because of the cancer blockage, has had a nefrostomy tube for the past 20-months. It is painless, the replacement needed about every 6-months is simple out-patient surgery - but it's a bit intrusive in lifestyle. The biggest mental thing to get thru is the small urinine bag around your lower leg. The tube that comes out of the back is coming from the kidney - and going to the outer bag. The only frequent maintenence items are ... emptying the bag several times a day - and getting new special dressings weekly at the hospital.
My current creatine level has been from 1.7 to 2.2 for many months or longer. In June of 2012, I was admitted into the hospital with a near record 14.+ for a creatine level. The stent and nefrostomy tube were placed at that time. No dyalisis (sp?) has been required except for my first time with kidney failure in the hospital - in January 2011.
Please do check the pain problem and risks with a medical pro. Don't let it slide! What I've written above may not be applicable at all - but it may be another avenue of medical help that's not too invasive.
Peace and wellness
Rob & Gizmo