Types Of Kidney Stones
Doctors break down kidney stones into types. Knowing which kind you have could affect the treatment you get. They include:
Calcium stones: These are the most common ones. Even just eating some foods very high in oxalates, such as rhubarb, or taking unusually high levels of vitamin D, can boost your chances of getting this type. You could get this kind if you typically donât drink enough water or if you sweat a lot and donât replace the fluids you lose.
Cystine stones: This is the least common typeThis is the least common type and due to a genetic mutation. In this situation your kidneys have trouble reabsorbing a compound called cystine, which ends up in the urine at higher levels and causes stones to form.
Struvite stones: Infections, especially in the urinary tract, can cause this kind of stone.
Uric acid stones: Eating large amounts of animal proteins can lead to uric acid buildup in your urine. That can eventually form a stone either with or without calcium. Risk factors include gout, diabetes, and chronic diarrhea.
What Does A Kidney Stone Feel Like In The Urethra
Pain or burning during urination Once the stone reaches the junction between the ureter and bladder, you’ll start to feel pain when you urinate . Your doctor might call this dysuria. The pain can feel sharp or burning. If you don’t know you have a kidney stone, you might mistake it for a urinary tract infection.
Take Steps To Bypass Kidney Stones
Even though kidney stones can be common and recur once youve had them, there are simple ways to help prevent them. Here are some strategies that can help:
1. Drink enough water. A 2015 meta-analysis from the National Kidney Foundation found that people who produced 2 to 2.5 liters of urine daily were 50% less likely to develop kidney stones than those who produced less. It takes about 8 to 10 8-ounce glasses of water daily to produce that amount.
2. Eat more calcium-rich plant foods.Good sources include yogurt, soy products, beans, lentils and seeds. Dietary calcium binds oxalate in the intestines, so less gets absorbed and lower concentrations end up in urine.
3. Enjoy some lemons. Citrate, a salt in citric acid, binds to calcium and helps block stone formation. “Studies have shown that drinking ½ cup of lemon juice concentrate diluted in water each day, or the juice of two lemons, can increase urine citrate and likely reduce kidney stone risk,” says Dr. Eisner.
4. Watch the sodium. A high-sodium diet can trigger kidney stones because it increases the amount of calcium in your urine. Federal guidelines suggest limiting total daily sodium intake to 2,300 milligrams .
5. Cut back on animal protein. Eating too much animal protein, such as meat, eggs, and seafood, boosts can increase the risk of forming stones. If youre prone to kidney stones, limit your daily meat intake to a quantity that is no bigger than a pack of playing cards.
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Why Do Doctors Examine The Contents Of The Stone
There are four types of stones. Studying the stone can help understand why you have it and how to reduce the risk of further stones. The most common type of stone contains calcium. Calcium is a normal part of a healthy diet. The kidney usually removes extra calcium that the body doesn’t need. Often people with stones keep too much calcium. This calcium combines with waste products like oxalate to form a stone. The most common combination is called calcium oxalate.
Less common types of stones are: Infection-related stones, containing magnesium and ammonia called struvite stones and stones formed from monosodium urate crystals, called uric acid stones, which might be related to obesity and dietary factors. The rarest type of stone is a cvstine stone that tends to run in families.
What Is A Kidney Stone
A kidney stone is a hard object that is made from chemicals in the urine. There are four types of kidney stones: calcium oxalate, uric acid, struvite, and cystine. A kidney stone may be treated with shockwave lithotripsy, uteroscopy, percutaneous nephrolithomy or nephrolithotripsy. Common symptoms include severe pain in lower back, blood in your urine, nausea, vomiting, fever and chills, or urine that smells bad or looks cloudy.
Urine has various wastes dissolved in it. When there is too much waste in too little liquid, crystals begin to form. The crystals attract other elements and join together to form a solid that will get larger unless it is passed out of the body with the urine. Usually, these chemicals are eliminated in the urine by the body’s master chemist: the kidney. In most people, having enough liquid washes them out or other chemicals in urine stop a stone from forming. The stone-forming chemicals are calcium, oxalate, urate, cystine, xanthine, and phosphate.
After it is formed, the stone may stay in the kidney or travel down the urinary tract into the ureter. Sometimes, tiny stones move out of the body in the urine without causing too much pain. But stones that don’t move may cause a back-up of urine in the kidney, ureter, the bladder, or the urethra. This is what causes the pain.
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Get Rapid Relief From Kidney Stones At Your Nearest Emergency Room In Frisco Or Fort Worth Tx
The pain and frustration of kidney stones can be debilitating and wreak havoc on a persons everyday life. Not only that, but some kidney stones can cause dangerous complications when left untreated. Dont sacrifice your comfort, health, and safety when it comes to kidney stones. If you suspect you may be passing a kidney stone or have previously been diagnosed with kidney stones that are now causing you painful or worrisome symptoms, visit your nearest iCare ER & Urgent Care location in Frisco or Fort Worth, TX today. Our exceptional and compassionate team of board-certified emergency physicians looks forward to giving you the relief and confidence you deserve.
Stages To Passing Kidney Stones
The goal of this blog is to provide insight into the process of passing a kidney stone. In particular, we will address what you should expect at each of the four stages along the way. For the newbies, kidney stones can be one of the most frightening experiences of a persons life. The pain starts almost immediately out of nowhere and typically generates significant panic for the person experiencing the pain. The pain is so great that it commonly elicits a ride in an ambulance or a middle of the night emergency trip to the ER. Either way, not a ton of fun.
To make matters worse, Hospital staff dont always know whats happening to you and provide very little useful advice. Even after they have identified that its a kidney stone, very little is communicated. And trust me, this comes from first-hand experience over multiple kidney stones. It is nothing short of shocking to learn about the lack of education for a condition that impacts over 1 in 10 Americans.
So, lets dive in.
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Get Care From An Expert
Kidney stonesare formed when there are more of certain chemicals in the urine than fluid to dilute forming a crystal. That crystal tries tomake its way out of your system through the urinary tract. Sadly, the urethrais smaller than the stone, so its a painful process. Symptoms of kidney stones can include intense pain inthe lower abdomen or back, blood in your urine, or a blockage that stops youfrom being able to urinate. If the pain you are feeling resemblesone of the stories above, get to your healthcare provider fast. They can helpwith some of the pain and put a treatment plan together.
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Diagnosis Of Kidney Stones
When you have kidney stone symptoms, as described above, see your health care provider. Shell check your medical history, give you a physical examination, and order imaging tests, as needed.
Your doctor may ask you to drink extra fluid to help flush out the stone. By straining your urine, you may be able to save a piece of the stone. This will enable your doctor to determine the type of stone, what may be causing the condition, and how to reduce your risk of recurring stones.
If your stone doesnt flush out, your doctor may order a high-resolution CT scan from the kidneys to the bladder or a KUB X-ray to determine the size and location of the stone.
Another test used for some patients is the intravenous pyelogram , an X-ray of the urinary tract taken after injecting dye.
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Kidney Stone Causes And Risk Factors
Both men and women can get kidney stones, but menâs chances of getting them are about double that of womenâs.
Itâs often hard to figure out what caused a kidney stone. But they happen when your urine has high levels of certain minerals. These include:
If you donât have enough urine in your body to water down the high concentration of minerals, stones can form. Think about stirring up your favorite drink from a powder mix. If you donât add enough liquid say, water or juice the powder will clump up and turn into hard, dry chunks.
Things that can raise your risk for kidney stones include:
- Some medications like triamterene , a diuretic that treats high blood pressure antiseizure drugs corticosteroids and protease inhibitors like indinavir sulfate for HIV.
Can Kidney Stone Symptoms Come And Go
The length of time a stone can hang around is the primary reason that a person may feel like kidney stone symptoms come and go.
Once you start feeling the pain of a kidney stone, it can take anywhere between one to four weeks for the stone to actually pass. In the meantime, the pain can seem sporadic. Here’s why:
“During a bout of kidney stones, the initial pain is typically caused by the stone making its way through your very narrow ureter tube. There can also be pain if the stone lodges itself there and blocks urine flow out of the kidney, which results in pressure buildup and painful swelling,” explains Dr. Kannady.
As your body tries to move the kidney stone through your ureter, some of your pain may also be from the waves of contractions used to force the kidney stone out. The pain may also move as the kidney stone moves along your urinary tract.
“Once the stone makes it to your bladder, the pain might subside to some degree and you may notice urinary symptoms in its place. The final push from your bladder to outside of your body can reignite sharp feelings of pain, as the stone is now passing through another narrow tube called your urethra,” says Dr. Kannady.
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What Do Kidney Stone Symptoms Feel Like
You’re probably already aware that passing a kidney stone can be incredibly painful. Perhaps you’ve heard someone compare the pain to childbirth. Or maybe someone mentioned their experience with kidney stones completely recalibrated how they rate pain. Ouch.
But while the most-discussed kidney stone symptom is often the pain where it’s felt and how bad it can get it’s not the only symptom to be aware of.
“Kidney stones are fairly common and often painful, but they’re also treatable and even preventable,” says Dr. Chris Kannady, urologist at Houston Methodist. “If you think you might have a kidney stone, it’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible since delaying care for a kidney stone can lead to serious complications.”
But, when all you’ve heard about kidney stones is how much they hurt, how can you tell if your pain might be kidney stone pain?
When To Contact A Doctor
A person who is experiencing kidney pain should contact a doctor as soon as possible to find out what is causing it.
People must contact a doctor to diagnose and treat kidney pain. Receiving the correct treatment ensures that the kidneys do not become damaged, which can lead to kidney failure.
Doctors may order tests such as:
- urine tests, which can help them identify any infections
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What Are The Symptoms Of Kidney Stones
“A kidney stone is a hard mass that’s made up of minerals , certain salts and other byproducts. They can form when these substances accumulate in the area of your kidneys where urine is produced,” explains Dr. Kannady.
Kidney stones can be as small as the point of a pen or as large as a ping pong ball.
“Typically, a person doesn’t start noticing the symptoms of a kidney stone until it moves from the kidney into the ureter, which is the tube that carries urine from your kidney to your bladder,” Dr. Kannady adds.
Kidney stone symptoms include:
- Sharp pain in the lower abdomen, typically on one side
- A burning sensation or pain while urinating
- Urinating frequently
- Feeling like you’re urinating incompletely or in small amounts
- Urine that is brown, red or pink, which indicates the presence of blood
- Smelly or cloudy urine
- Feeling queasy or nauseous due to the intensity of the pain
- Signs of infection, including fever, chills and vomiting
How To Pass Kidney Stones
Stones cause trouble when they obstruct or block the ureter, the tube which drains urine from the kidney to the bladder. Pain can come and go, depending on the degree of obstruction. If the stone is sitting in the ureter without causing blockage, there may be little or no pain. However, if the stone turns even slightly, it may cause partial or complete blockage, which can cause gradual or sudden onset of severe pain.
When trying to pass a stone, patients should proceed as follows:
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Signs Of Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are crystals that develop in the kidneys and are often extremely painful. The stones may block urine flow and can, in severe instances, result in renal failure. The most common type of kidney stone forms when calcium and oxalate clump together in concentrated urine. A less common type, composed of uric acid, is more common in men than in women. Often, the stones are small enough to pass unnoticed through the ureter, the tube connecting the kidney and bladder. Occasionally, larger stones can become lodged and require treatment.
What Are The Symptoms After You Pass A Kidney Stone
There might be some residual soreness and pain, but this should be temporary. Lingering pain after passing a kidney stone could be a sign that you have another stone, an obstruction, or infection. It could also be an unrelated issue. Kidney stones can also cause nausea, vomiting, or blood in the urine.
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Should I Cut Calcium Out Of My Diet If I Develop Calcium Oxalate Kidney Stones
If you develop kidney stones composed of calcium, you may be tempted to stop eating foods that include calcium. However, this is the opposite of what you should do. If you have calcium oxalate stones, the most common type, its recommended that you have a diet higher in calcium and lower in oxalate.
Foods that are high in calcium include:
Its also important to drink plenty of fluids to dilute the substances in your urine.
Kidney Stones And Pain
Kidney stone pain can be excruciating. Individuals who have never had a stone may be suffering from a great deal of discomfort without knowing why. In reality, kidney stones are generally silent until they begin to pass. A stone that grows to 3 millimeters or larger can block the ureter as it moves from the kidney to the bladder. This movement can cause unbearable pain, usually in the lower back, right / left flank, or groin. Kidney stone pain can be intermittent or ongoing.
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How Are Kidney Stones Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will discuss your medical history and possibly order some tests. These tests include:
- Imaging tests: An X-ray, CT scan and ultrasound will help your healthcare provider see the size, shape, location and number of your kidney stones. These tests help your provider decide what treatment you need.
- Blood test: A blood test will reveal how well your kidneys are functioning, check for infection and look for biochemical problems that may lead to kidney stones.
- Urine test: This test also looks for signs of infection and examines the levels of the substances that form kidney stones.
What Does It Feel Like When You Are Passing A Kidney Stone
Passing a kidney stone is commonly known to cause a kidney stone pain that does feel like sudden intense stabbing pain that comes and goes with painful frequent urination, blood in urine, nausea and vomiting. Fever and chills usually occur when there is a kidney or urinary tract infection.
The symptoms of passing a kidney stone and their severity usually depend on the location of the stone and its size. Kidney stone pain is one of the most common signs of kidney stones and usually occur as the stone blocks the renal pelvis or travels through the ureter. Kidney stone pain may affect the lower abdomen, belly or back flank pain. In some cases kidney stones may cause pain under ribs. The kidney stones pain location may indicate the part of the ureter the stone gets stuck. The kidney stone pain is especially severe when the kidney stone travels through a narrower passage of the ureter .
Once the stone is passed out of your body, many of the kidney stone symptoms typically get better fast.
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