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Do Females Get Kidney Stones

Overview About The Kidney Stones

Doctors Seeing a Growing Trend of Kidney Stones in Women

Experiencing the kidney stone disease is very painful. Kidney stones are crystalline salts which are accumulated over the time in the kidneys. Its cause can be excessive calcium, oxalate, uric acid, and dehydration. Its main symptoms include pain in the lower side of the abdomen, groin area and blood in the urine. Sometimes granules are even passed in the urine as an indication of kidney stones and it also causes pain and bruising in the lining or urinary system.

Kidney stones are either of small size or large size. Small size kidney stones can pass on their own however large size stones require some treatment along with the procedure for their removal which is done by the physician. Also, the time required for the small stones to pass on their own can depend on its size and location. The farther in the urinary tract the stone is present away from the kidneys lesser is the time taken by it to pass out from the system.

Who Is Most Affected By Kidney Stones

Kidney stones aren’t new. Evidence of bladder stones was found in a seven thousand year old Egyptian mummy. Bladder stones were well-known in Hippocrates’ time in Ancient Greece. But kidney stones are becoming more common in the United States and more common in women. We used to think that kidney stones were a problem for middle aged men but now, they’re becoming more common in middle aged women and can also be a problem in pregnancy.

Once someone’s had one kidney stone, they have about a 50/50 chance of getting another. Ow! Kidney stones now affect about one in ten men in their lifetime and one in twelve women. There are different kinds of minerals in kidney stones but the most common are calcium containing stones. There are some diseases that are associated with kidney stones like gout or overactive parathyroid gland and others but the most common stones just happen.

Prevention Of Future Stones

Once your health care provider finds out why you are forming stones, he or she will give you tips on how to prevent them. This may include changing your diet and taking certain medications. There is no “one-size-fits-all” diet for preventing kidney stones. Everyone is different. Your diet may not be causing your stones to form. But there are dietary changes that you can make to stop stones from continuing to form.

Diet Changes

Drink enough fluids each day.

If you are not producing enough urine, your health care provider will recommend you drink at least 3 liters of liquid each day. This equals about 3 quarts . This is a great way to lower your risk of forming new stones. Remember to drink more to replace fluids lost when you sweat from exercise or in hot weather. All fluids count toward your fluid intake. But it’s best to drink mostly no-calorie or low-calorie drinks. This may mean limiting sugar-sweetened or alcoholic drinks.

Knowing how much you drink during the day can help you understand how much you need to drink to produce 2.5 liters of urine. Use a household measuring cup to measure how much liquid you drink for a day or two. Drink from bottles or cans with the fluid ounces listed on the label. Keep a log, and add up the ounces at the end of the day or 24-hour period. Use this total to be sure you are reaching your daily target urine amount of at least 85 ounces of urine daily.

Reduce the amount of salt in your diet.
Eat the recommended amount of calcium.

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What Are The Causes Of Kidney Stones Or How Do Kidney Stones Occur

After your body absorbs the nutrition it needs, the remaining waste products travel through the bloodstream to the kidneys. The waste products get removed from your body through urine. When there is too much of waste and too less liquid in the urine, crystals begin to form which stick together and form solid masses or kidney stones. The reasons of kidney stones forming in the body varies.

There are four main types of kidney stones:

  • Calcium Stones: Calcium stones are the most common form of kidney stones. They are formed when there is too much calcium in the urine. They may form due to an overactive parathyroid gland, an inherited condition called hypercalciuria, kidney disease, some cancers, or a condition called sarcoidosis.
  • Struvite Stones: These are horn-shaped and can grow quite large. They are usually caused by urinary tract infection.
  • Uric Acid Stones: Uric acid stones are softer than other types of kidney stones. They may occur due to a high-protein low-fibre diet. Patients suffering from gout are found to be at a higher risk to get uric acid stones.
  • Cystine Stones: They are caused by a rare hereditary disorder called cystinuria. Cystine stones are larger than other forms of kidney stones and tend to recur.

In about 85% of the cases, small kidney stones pass out in the urine without medical intervention. Stones bigger than 5 mm may require medical intervention. Stones as small as 2 mm have been know to cause discomforting symptoms.

Quick Read Yes Women Can Get Kidney Stones

Female 5mm Kidney Stone Picture
  • Kidney stones are being diagnosed in women at increasing rates.
  • Obesity, diabetes and associated conditions increase kidney stone risk in women.
  • Other risk factors include climate change and hot, dry climates.

While youve likely heard of kidney stones , theres a lot of misconceptions about these pebble-like deposits.

Kidney stones are hard formations that develop in your kidneys when there is a high concentration of substances like calcium, oxalate, uric acid and phosphorus in your urine. They can vary in color, density, location and shape, and range in size from as small as a grain of sand to, in rare cases, as large as a spikey golf ball.

Perhaps the most common misconception is that kidney stones only happen to men, but this is simply not true. Around 11% of men and 6% of women are diagnosed with kidney stones in their lifetime, and this gender gap is closing as women are diagnosed at increasing rates.

While some of this is likely due to improved sensitivity of imaging even tiny, symptom-free stones can be seen with todays advanced technology much of the increase can likely be attributed to common health-related challenges: our ongoing obesity epidemic and the health challenges posed by our diets and sedentary lifestyles.

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The 4 Stages Of Passing A Kidney Stone

Your kidneys work hard to remove fluid and waste from the body. During this process, kidney stones can sometimes form. Kidney stones are hardened mineral deposits that can form in the urinary tract. They often pass unnoticed or can be extremely painful and require treatment.

This article provides a look at the four main stages of passing a kidney stone.

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What Factors Increase Womens Risk Of Kidney Stones

Why is the incidence of kidney stones increasing in women? Well, the risk for stones include obesity, high-salt diet, increased sugar in the diet, and diabetes. All these risks have increased for women over the past 30 years. Some recent studies looked at the risks for kidney stones in women. 82,000 post-menopausal women were followed in the womens health initiative study. Women who didnt get stones had the highest intake of fiber, fruits and vegetables and lower sugar intake.

Unfortunately, women whove already had stones didnt seem to lower their risk of getting them by having a diet high in fiber, fruits and vegetables. So once youre a stone former youre kind of stuck, or the stone is stuck. Another study of many thousands of women showed that a diet high in calcium was a little bit of a risk but taking calcium supplements wasnt.

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How To Treat Kidney Stones Naturally

It may take a few weeks to clear the kidney stone. You can try at-home remedies for kidney stones for up to six weeks to attempt to clear them. If the pain in your kidneys is so intense that you require to consult a physician or a specialist, you can use expulsive therapy to eliminate kidney stones in just only a couple of days.

What do you need to do at home to remove a kidney stone on your own to alleviate the extreme pain?

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A High Protein Diet For 1 Year Does Not Have Any Adverse Effect On The Kidney Whey Supplements Do Not Cause Any Harm To The Kidney

Why Do We Get Kidney Stones? | Anna Zampini, MD

In a study performed by Jose Antonio titled A High Protein Diet Has No Harmful Effects: A One-Year Crossover Study in Resistance-Trained Males . Dr. Jose Antonio found no adverse effect of prolonged consumption of protein on kidneys.

This research carries a special significance since this is one of the longest studies performed. In this study subjects consumed about 3 grams of protein/ kg of body weight/ day. Also, the study was performed on subjects who had experience in resistance training. During the study, all subjects underwent resistance exercises.

This study relates to most of the bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts who are consuming protein supplements as a part of their diet.

14 healthy subjects underwent the study. The subjects consumed their normal diet for 6 months and high protein diet for 6 months. For both diets subjects consumed 2.51 and 3.32 grams of protein /kg of body weight/ day respectively.

Subjects used whey protein to fulfill the higher protein requirements.

Even the normal diet of the subjects contained three times more protein than the normal requirements.

Various tests were performed to indicate blood lipid levels, liver and kidney functions at the end of the study

# indicates > 60 mL/min/1.73m3

The table above shows the values of various kidney function tests after one year of the study.

The values did for the kidney function test did not change much from baseline for both normal and high protein diet.

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Is There Any Way To Make Them Pass Faster

The best home remedy to encourage the stone to pass is to drink lots of fluids, especially plain water and citrus juices such as orange or grapefruit. The extra fluid causes you to urinate more, which helps the stone move and keeps it from growing. You should aim for at least 2 to 3 quarts of water per day.

Smaller stones are more likely to pass on their own, so you should take steps to keep the stone from growing. This includes eating a diet thats low in salt, calcium, and protein.

However, you need all of these for your body to function properly, so talk with your doctor about an appropriate diet to help you pass the stone.

Passing a kidney stone can be very painful. Taking pain medication such as ibuprofen wont speed up the process, but it can make you a lot more comfortable while passing the stone. A heating pad can also help.

If you have a fever, significant nausea, or are unable to keep down liquids without vomiting, you should seek medical care.

Likewise, if you have only one kidney or known kidney problems or damage, see a doctor immediately.

An infected kidney stone is a surgical emergency. If you notice any signs of infection, go to the hospital.

Treatment For Kidney Stones

Most kidney stones can be treated without surgery. Ninety per cent of stones pass by themselves within three to six weeks. In this situation, the only treatment required is pain relief. However, pain can be so severe that hospital admission and very strong pain-relieving medication may be needed. Always seek immediate medical attention if you are suffering strong pain.

Small stones in the kidney do not usually cause problems, so there is often no need to remove them. A doctor specialising in the treatment of kidney stones is the best person to advise you on treatment.

If a stone doesnt pass and blocks urine flow or causes bleeding or an infection, then it may need to be removed. New surgical techniques have reduced hospital stay time to as little as 48 hours. Treatments include:

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But What Is A High Protein Diet Exactly

If were going to start talking smack about high protein diets, we need to define what we mean, and people are generally bad at doing that. Sometimes its defined as percentage of total calories, sometimes its grams per pound of bodyweight, and the cutoffs are always arbitrary and vary by researcher, field, or consensus.

The RDI suggests 0.36 grams per pound of bodyweight, or 0.8 grams per kilogram. Anyone whos been in the strength game for a while will be more familiar with another number: 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight, every day. Two hundred grams for a two-hundred-pound person.

Were not trying to say that is the optimal amount of protein to consume many get by just fine on much less but thats the number we hear thrown around the most.

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Who Is More Likely To Develop Kidney Stones

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Men are more likely to develop kidney stones than women. If you have a family history of kidney stones, you are more likely to develop them. You are also more likely to develop kidney stones again if youve had them once.

You may also be more likely to develop a kidney stone if you dont drink enough liquids.

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Symptoms Of Kidney Stone In Women

There is usually no difference in kidney stone symptoms in women and men. The only thing is that women are more likely to develop issues related to kidney stones in their 50s. It is important to mention that kidney stones may never cause any symptoms at all, especially when they are small enough to pass through your urinary tract. You may, however, notice certain symptoms when they actually start to move. Some of the most common symptoms of kidney stones in women include the following:

  • You will experience severe pain that will hit you out of nowhere. It becomes worse in waves and makes you feel pain in the abdomen, back, genitals or groin. The pain is usually quite excruciating.

  • You may notice blood in your urine, which usually is the outcome of a stone passing through the ureters.

  • You will experience frequent and painful urination, which usually happens when the stone stays in ureter or reaches the urethra. This may also cause a urinary tract infection.

These are the most common kidney stone symptoms in women, but you may experience the same in other conditions such as hernias, appendicitis, prostatitis and ectopic pregnancy. It is, therefore, important to consult with your doctor to identify the real cause of your symptoms. An early diagnosis will go a long way in helping you recover fast.

Blocked Ureter And Kidney Infection

A kidney stone that blocks the ureter can lead to a kidney infection. This is because waste products are unable to pass the blockage, which may cause a build-up of bacteria.

The symptoms of a kidney infection are similar to symptoms of kidney stones, but may also include:

  • a high temperature of 38C or over
  • chills and shivering

Kidney stones are usually formed following a build-up of certain chemicals in the body.

This build-up may be any of the following:

  • uric acid a waste product produced when the body breaks down food to use as energy
  • cysteine an amino acid that helps to build protein

Certain medical conditions can lead to an unusually high level of these substances in your urine.

You’re also more likely to develop kidney stones if you don’t drink enough fluids.

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Eat These Foods That Can Cause Kidney Stones In Moderation

If you have urinary health issues, you want to do everything possible to keep them from recurring. Please consume these foods that can cause kidney stones in moderation or eliminate them from your diet see if your symptoms abate.

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Sodium Intake Affects Urine Calcium Response To Acid

Preventing Kidney Stones

In a prior article I showed the urine calcium lowering effects of potassium citrate were independent of the effects of diet sodium. But those data, and trial data like it are observations. Suppose you give people an acid load so their urine calcium goes up as a result of what you did and also varied sodium intake a direct experiment, not observations.

I did that, and although others also may have done the same, my experiment was a good one and I like it.

Four people were studied during three control days points to the left on the graph. They had normal urine calcium excretions , normal serum PTH levels and normal serum total calcium and ionized calcium . That is what one expects from normal people.

I gave them ammonium chloride which is an acid load, and as you might expect by now their urine calcium should go up. But, I also lowered their sodium intake to 40 80 mEq daily and take a look urine calcium did not change.

Their blood became distinctly acidic you will have to look at the paper. The calcium ion rose and the total calcium fell because the acidity tends to liberate calcium ion from binding to blood proteins and from phosphate complexes.

I then raised the diet sodium to about 200 mEq and there was the urine calcium increase. Serum PTH went up, too, perhaps because the kidneys were losing calcium.

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Why You Get Stones

Part of preventing stones is finding out why you get them. Your health care provider will perform tests to find out what is causing this. After finding out why you get stones, your health care provider will give you tips to help stop them from coming back.

Some of the tests he or she may do are listed below.

Medical and Dietary History

Your health care provider will ask questions about your personal and family medical history. He or she may ask if:

  • Have you had more than one stone before?
  • Has anyone in your family had stones?
  • Do you have a medical condition that may increase your chance of having stones, like frequent diarrhea, gout or diabetes?

Knowing your eating habits is also helpful. You may be eating foods that are known to raise the risk of stones. You may also be eating too few foods that protect against stones or not drinking enough fluids.

Understanding your medical, family and dietary history helps your health care provider find out how likely you are to form more stones.

Blood and Urine Tests

Imaging Tests

When a health care provider sees you for the first time and you have had stones before, he or she may want to see recent X-rays or order a new X-ray. They will do this to see if there are any stones in your urinary tract. Imaging tests may be repeated over time to check for stone growth. You may also need this test if you are having pain, hematuria or recurrent infections.

Stone Analysis

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