Tips For Passing Kidney Stones
Affecting more than half a million people each year, kidney stones are small pieces of minerals that build up due to chemicals in the urine. There are four kinds of kidney stones: calcium, uric acid, struvite, and cystine, and they can cause a number of symptoms. Some symptoms that may indicate the presence of kidney stones include pain in your lower back, blood in your urine, nausea, fever, or cloudy urine.
Sometimes, kidney stones may pass from the body through the urine without causing too much pain. However, kidney stones that do not move can cause a back-up of urine in the body, which can be quite painful.
Diet And Calcium Stones
Follow these guidelines if you have calcium kidney stones:
- Drink plenty of fluids, particularly water.
- Eat less salt. Chinese and Mexican food, tomato juice, regular canned foods, and processed foods are often high in salt. Look for low-salt or unsalted products.
- Have only 2 or 3 servings a day of foods with a lot of calcium, such as milk, cheese, yogurt, oysters, and tofu.
- Eat lemons or oranges, or drink fresh lemonade. Citrate in these foods prevents stones from forming.
- Limit how much protein you eat. Choose lean meats.
- Eat a low-fat diet.
Do not take extra calcium or vitamin D, unless the provider who is treating your kidney stones recommends it.
- Watch out for antacids that contain extra calcium. Ask your provider which antacids are safe for you to take.
- Your body still needs the normal amount of calcium you get from your daily diet. Limiting calcium may actually increase the chance that stones will form.
Ask your provider before taking vitamin C or fish oil. They may be harmful to you.
If your provider says you have calcium oxalate stones, you may also need to limit foods that are high in oxalate. These foods include:
- Fruits: rhubarb, currants, canned fruit salad, strawberries, and Concord grapes
- Vegetables: beets, leeks, summer squash, sweet potatoes, spinach, and tomato soup
- Drinks: tea and instant coffee
- Other foods: grits, tofu, nuts, and chocolate
Where Is Kidney Stone Pain Located
The sharp pain associated with a kidney stone moves as the stone progresses through your urinary tract. The most common places to feel pain are in your:
- Lower abdomen or groin
- Along one side of your body, below your ribs
- Lower back
However, while pain is certainly the most noticeable symptoms of kidney stones, it’s not always the earliest sign or even the most telling sign, for that matter.
“The pain associated with a kidney stone typically isn’t felt until after its already formed and is passing through your urinary tract,” explains Dr. Kannady. “In addition, due to differences in anatomy, men and women describe kidney stone pain slightly differently. Not to mention that pain itself is relative and everyone has a different threshold for it.”
Plus, the intensity of the pain isn’t necessarily a measure of how problematic the kidney stone might be or become. Smaller stones that are likely to pass on their own can still be very painful. And not every kidney stone that requires medical intervention comes with gut-wrenching pain.
“Any time you’re experiencing pain, it’s important to see your doctor. But if you’re experiencing pain, even if it’s only mind, in combination with the kidney stone symptoms above and, in particular, if you have a fever or severe trouble urinating it’s definitely important to see your doctor,” warns Dr. Kannady.
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How To Know If I Have Kidney Stones
Before trying any method of passing kidney stones, you need to ensure that you really have them. You usually experience no symptom until the stone starts moving around in your kidney. It may sometimes pass into your ureters and cause certain signs and symptoms, such as pain on urination, pain in the back and side, below the ribs, and pink, brown or red urine.
Pain may be quite severe but usually comes in waves. You may start urinating more and experience some other symptoms such as nausea, cloudy and foul-smelling urine, chills and fevers, and urinating small amounts of urine at a time. You may have to see your doctor if pain is so severe, you notice blood in urine, or you have pain with fever and chills.
How Do I Know If I Have Kidney Stones
If kidney stones are small enough, you might not even know you had kidney stones. They may pass on their own through your urine, and the problem resolves itself.
These are called silent kidney stones, mostly spotted during X-rays in a physical exam.
But there are signs that you may have kidney stones:
- pain on your lower back or sides
- nausea accompanied with the pain
- an intense need to urinate
- frequent need to urinate
- cloudy urine
For men, you might also feel some pain at the end of your penis.
Some of these symptoms are similar to a urinary tract infection . But if you feel any pain or notice unusual symptoms, let your doctor know.
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What To Expect At Home
You visited your provider or the hospital because you have a kidney stone. You will need to take self-care steps. Which steps you take depend on the type of stone you have, but they may include:
- Drinking extra water and other liquids
- Eating more of some foods and cutting back on other foods
- Taking medicines to help prevent stones
- Taking medicines to help you pass a stone
You may be asked to try to catch your kidney stone. You can do this by collecting all of your urine and straining it. Your provider will tell you how to do this.
How Are Kidney Stones Treated
Once diagnosed, your healthcare provider will first determine if you even need treatment. Some smaller kidney stones may leave your system when you urinate. This can be very painful. If your provider decides that you do need treatment, your options include medications and surgery.
Medications. Medications may be prescribed to:
- Your healthcare provider may recommend that you take an over-the-counter medication like ibuprofen or, if youre in the emergency room, an IV narcotic.
- Manage nausea/vomiting.
- Relax your ureter so that the stones pass. Commonly prescribed medicines include tamsulosin and nifedipine .
You should ask your healthcare provider before you take ibuprofen. This drug can increase the risk of kidney failure if taken while youre having an acute attack of kidney stones especially in those who have a history of kidney disease and associated illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension and obesity.
Surgery. There are four types of surgeries used to treat kidney stones. The first three are minimally invasive, meaning that the surgeon enters your body through a natural opening , or makes a small incision.
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When Surgery Is Necessary
If you think you might have a kidney stone, you should see your doctor as soon as possible. If youre found to have one, your doctor can help you determine whether to try to pass the stone naturally, take medication, or get the stone surgically removed.
In some circumstances, your doctor might recommend immediate surgical removal without a waiting period. This will usually be because the stone is too big to pass naturally or is blocking urine flow. If the stone is blocking the flow of urine, it can lead to an infection or renal damage.
In other circumstances, your doctor might recommend waiting to see if you can pass the stone on your own. You should check in with your doctor often during this time to see if anything is changing, especially if you have new symptoms.
During the waiting period, your doctor might recommend surgery if the stone continues to grow, youre having unmanageable pain, or you develop signs of infection, such as a fever. Infection, fever, kidney damage, intractable pain, or intractable vomiting are all indications for immediate surgery.
What Are Kidney Stones And How Can They Be Treated
The excruciating pain of a kidney stone is so intense that it leads to more than 1 million emergency room visits each year in the U.S. Some people even compare the pain of passing a kidney stone to the experience of childbirth. Although kidney stones often pass on their own, some of then become lodged within the urinary tract and require medical intervention.
Here at the practice of Dr. Alex Lesani, a fellowship-trained urologist and robotic surgeon, in Las Vegas, Dr. Lasani and his medical team skillfully diagnose and provide prompt treatment for painful kidney stones.
Do you know what kidney stones are and how they can be treated? Dr. Lasani answers these questions.
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Contact Summit Medical Clinic
At Summit Medical Clinic, we know how difficult it can be to live with kidney stones, which is why we provide consultation and care for the prevention and treatment of kidney-related diseases. If you are experiencing pain due to kidney stones, contact us today by calling 630-1006.
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Is Milk Good For Kidney Stones
Yes. Calcium-rich foods such as milk, yogurt, and some cheese and oxalate-rich foods are beneficial for preventing kidney stones. This is because oxalate and calcium from the foods are more likely to bind to one another in the stomach and intestines before entering the kidneys, make it less likely that kidney stones will form.
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Whats The Urinary Tract How Does It Work
Your urinary tract is vital to your body because it gets rid of waste and extra fluid. Its made up of both your kidneys, two ureters, your bladder and your urethra. Each organ has an important job :
- Kidneys: Your fist-sized, bean-shaped kidneys are located on either side of your spine, below your rib cage. Each day they filter 120 to 150 quarts of your blood to remove waste and balance fluids. Your kidneys make one to two quarts of urine every day.
- Ureters: After your kidney creates urine, the liquid travels through the tube-shaped ureter to the bladder. There is one ureter per kidney. Kidney stones can pass through the ureters or, if theyre too big, get stuck in them. You may require surgery if the stone is too large.
- Bladder: Between your hip bones is your bladder, an organ that stores urine. It stretches to hold about one and a half to two cups.
- Urethra: Like a ureter, your urethra is a tube through which urine passes. Its the final stop of the urinary tract where your urine leaves your body. This is called urination.
What Can You Do To Help Pass A Kidney Stone 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 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.
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How Is Lithotripsy Performed
Lithotripsy procedures are typically done as an outpatient procedure. Urology San Antonio performs most outpatient procedures at the Pasteur Plaza Surgery Center .
Patients will be given a sedative or undergo general anesthesia for the procedure. Even though there are no incisions, the procedure could cause discomfort. Its important for the patient to remain still and comfortable during the procedure, so some type of anesthesia is generally used.
The patient will lay on a procedure table where cushion filled with water will be placed near the area being treated. The body will be positioned so the device can deliver precise shockwaves to the appropriate area. It may take a couple thousand shockwaves to break up stones, so the process may take around an hour to complete.
Following the procedure, patients will usually spend a few hours in the recovery room at the surgery center before being released home.
Ejaculation And Kidney Health
can ejaculating help pass a kidney stone? One theory that explains why sex can help kidney stones decay is that when you get aroused then the ureter will relax. The ureter itself is a tube that carries urine from the kidneys to the bladder. Often kidney stones will come out through the ureter. So that when the ureter relaxes, then the kidney stones can come out easily.
In addition, this study also found that orgasm can also relax the muscles of the ureter that smooths the way of kidney stones to get out. The results of this study also showed that men with kidney stone pain who regularly have sex as much as 3-4 times a week showed a decrease in the size of kidney stones to more than 6mm.
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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:
- Cows milk.
Its also important to drink plenty of fluids to dilute the substances in your urine.
What Is Kidney Stone Pain Like
Kidney stones are sharp stones that could cause sharp, shooting pains. You may feel pain around your lower back or your sides. It could travel down to your abdomen and all the way to your groin.
And as you try to pass kidney stones, you might also feel them in your ureter. Men may feel pain at the tip of their penis.
The pain may come and go. Sometimes, it might be too much to bear and lead to a visit to the emergency room.
If you feel pain and experience a burning sensation when you urinate, visit your doctor.
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What Is A Kidney Stone
A kidney stone is a solid piece of material that forms in a kidney. A stone can get stuck as it leaves the kidney. It can lodge in one of your two ureters , the bladder, or the urethra .
Kidney stones may be the size of sand or gravel, as large as a pearl, or even larger. A stone can block the flow of your urine and cause great pain. A stone may also break loose and travel through your urinary tract all the way out of your body without causing too much pain.
There are four major types of kidney stones.
- Calcium is the most common type of stone. Calcium can combine with other substances, such as oxalate , to form the stone.
- A uric acid stone may form when your urine contains too much acid.
- A struvite stone may form after an infection in your urinary system.
- Cystine stones are rare. The disease that causes cystine stones runs in families.
Essential Facts Regarding Formation Of The Kidney Stone
i): All parts of our urinary system take an active part to filter the waste material from the blood.
ii): After filtering the waste substances excreted through urine.
iii): Kidney plays the role of a filter that strains out all the waste materials from the blood. In this way, it helps to keep the amount of salt and other minerals in appropriate quantity to maintain the proper balance.
iv): a perfect balance of Sodium, potassium and calcium is necessary as too little or too much may cause acute health hazards and may damage the body equilibrium.
v): However, when too much of any of the compounds get filtered from the blood, it starts to deposit in the kidney wall in crystal form, which we call kidney stone.
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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?
Breaks Up Small Kidney Stones
Lemon juice is an excellent remedy for breaking and dissolving small kidney stones. Lemon juice contains the compound hydroxycitrate naturally. Hydroxycitrate has the ability to break up small calcium oxalate stones, thereby allowing them to travel more easily through the urinary tract, and eventually, these stone pieces are passed through the urine.
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