Saturday, June 8, 2024
HomePainIs Lower Back Pain A Sign Of Kidney Problems

Is Lower Back Pain A Sign Of Kidney Problems

What Are Symptoms Of Kidney Pain

Signs Of Kidney Problems – Lower Back Pain And Other Symptoms Of Renal Trouble

Symptoms of kidney pain occur in the area of the kidneys, on the sides or middle to upper back, on one or both sides, and may be described as:

  • A constant, dull ache in the sides, back, or belly
  • Pain in the side
  • Pain may come in waves
  • Pain may radiate to the belly or groin area

Depending on the cause of the kidney pain, symptoms that may accompany it include:

Raleigh Adult Medicine: Compassionate Internal Medicine Doctors In Raleigh Nc

Its sometimes difficult to tell the difference between back pain and kidney pain. Often, there are subtle cues that can be easy to overlook. Thats why we want to help you alleviate your pain, regardless of whether the source is your kidneys or another condition.

Contact us for an appointment today.

For more than 20 years, Raleigh Adult Medicine has served as the Triangle areas premier internal medicine provider. We tailor our treatments to provide the finest personalized health care available for each stage of your adult life. Contact us to schedule an appointment.

Kidney Pain: Causes Why Kidneys Hurt And When To Seek Care

Medically reviewed by

Kidney pain can have many causes. It may be a sign of an infection, injury or another health problem, such as kidney stones. Because of where your kidneys are in your body, kidney pain is also often confused with back pain. Talk to your doctor to find out what is causing your kidney pain and to find the right treatment.

Don’t Miss: Is Zinc Bad For Your Kidneys

Kidney Pain Or Back Pain Sometimes It Can Be Tough To Tell But Each Will Provide Their Own Clues Heres What You Need To Know

Kidney pain or back pain? Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference.

On this page

Trying to understand why your back hurts can feel exhausting. Most cases of back pain go away on their own. But if the soreness or irritation lingers it can suggest a more substantial health concern possibly one associated with the kidneys.

Healthy kidneys help eliminate waste from the body, regulate blood pressure, make red blood cells, and perform other essential jobs all day every day. Youll find these bean-shaped organs below your ribs, close to the middle of your back. Thats why kidney problemsstones, infection, chronic kidney diseasescan easily be mistaken for .

Heres the thing, though. People with kidney disease sometimes have pain caused by their kidney disease, says Alan Charney, MD, a nephrologist at NYU Langone Health and clinical professor at the Department of Medicine at NYU Grossman School of Medicine. Remarkably, though, the kidney itself has no pain receptors!

When Should Call A Doctor For Kidney Pain

Lower back pain warning: Soreness in this part of the body could ...

Individuals should not postpone seeing a doctor about kidney pain or flank pain. Although flank pain is often seen in underlying problems with the kidney, there are many other diseases that can mimic kidney pain, and a physician can help with an accurate diagnosis of underlying problems that result in kidney or flank pain. Any acute onset of intense kidney or flank pain should be evaluated immediately.

Warning signs that kidney disease is present and may result in kidney pain or flank pain are the following:

  • Swelling of the hands and feet and/or puffiness around the eyes
  • Testing that shows an abnormal creatinine, blood urea nitrogen , or glomerular filtration rate less than 60

In addition, if an individual has diabetes or any of the congenital problems that lead to kidney dysfunction, the individual should be routinely checked for the onset of kidney dysfunction or kidney failure by their physician.

Recommended Reading: How Big Do Kidney Stones Get

Conditions That Improve Or Worsen Kidney Pain

Moving around will not affect the pain. It likely wont provide relief, but it will not worsen the symptoms either. In most cases, nothing you do will get rid of the pain until your doctor or specialist properly treats your kidneys.

Kidney pain is also accompanied by several other symptoms, including nausea, feverishness, vomiting, dark urine, frequent need to urinate, or pain while urinating.

Swelling In Hands Or Feet

Why this happens:

Failing kidneys don’t remove extra fluid, which builds up in your body causing swelling in the legs, ankles, feet, and/or hands.

What patients said:

I remember a lot of swelling in my ankles. My ankles were so big I couldn’t get my shoes on.

Going to work one morning, my left ankle was swollen, real swollen, and I was very exhausted just walking to the bus stop. And I knew then that I had to see a doctor.

Don’t Miss: What Is A Kidney Doctor Called

What Is The Difference Between Back Pain & Kidney Pain

Because your kidneys are located below your ribcage and towards your back, it can be difficult to tell whether the pain youre experiencing is back pain or kidney pain.

Since back pain is so common, its easy for people who are actually experiencing kidney issues to brush the pain off as normal back pain.

This can be dangerous, especially if the underlying cause of kidney pain is a condition that requires immediate medical treatment.

Your symptoms can help you determine whether youre experiencing back or kidney pain.

The type of pain and its severity can also help you understand the source of your pain.

In this guide, Ill break down the causes of back and kidney pain, and provide you with tips for identifying the source of your pain. Ill also tell you when its best to talk to your doctor.

Symptoms Of Kidney Stones

Kidney Problems Symptoms – Lower Back Pain And Other Signs Of Kidney Trouble

A person with kidney stones experiences sudden and painful flank pain. The pain usually comes in waves and radiates to the groin. The pain continues until the stone leaves the body. If the stone is small enough, it will leave when a person urinates. Larger stones require surgical removal. Other symptoms of kidney stones include:

  • Pain when Urinating

If experiencing potential kidney stones, a trip to the doctor to ensure the stones can pass through the urinary tract is necessary.

Recommended Reading: Watermelon Good For Kidneys

Recommended Reading: What’s Good For Kidney Stones

What Says That One Is Suffering From Stage 3a Moderate Chronic Kidney Disease

Like all the other stages are diagnosed with the help of the GFR test. There is a certain level that you have to maintain, and it is necessary.

This stage is broken up into two: a decrease in glomerular filtration rate for Stage 3A is 45-59 mL/min and a decrease in GFR for Stage 3B is 30-44 mL/min. As kidney function declines waste products can build up in the blood causing a condition known as uremia.

In stage 3A person is more likely to develop complications of kidney disease such as high blood pressure, anemia which means a shortage of red blood cells and/or early bone disease.

Back Pain And Stage 3 Chronic Kidney Disease

Back pain is a complaint of some people with Stage 3 Chronic Kidney Disease. Understanding the exact causes of this symptom is very important, in order to seek appropriate medical solution. The below are the various kidney diseases that may result in symptom of pain in the back.

1. Kidney infection, or Pyelonephritis

It is a type of kidney infection, which often occurs due to bacteria which have spread from the bladder. Symptoms experienced in this condition include side, groin, and back pain frequent urination with urgency burning while urination nausea and vomiting fever and blood in urine.

2. Polycystic kidney disease

This is an inherited disease wherein there is massive enlargement of the kidneys which happens over many years. If the cysts bleeds then it will cause flank pain. An individual suffering from PKD has symptoms like abdominal pain or tenderness, hematuria, frequent urination at night, flank pain, joint pain, hypertension, nail abnormalities, painful menstruation, etc.

3. Kidney stones

If you are suffering from back pain with Stage 3 Chronic Kidney Disease, then consult your doctor and get an exact diagnosis done, to treat the cause of the discomfort. With timely treatment, the above kidney disorders can be well managed and you can avoid Kidney Failure.

Donât Miss: What Laxative Is Safe For Kidneys

Don’t Miss: Can Sleep Apnea Cause Kidney Damage

Symptoms Of Kidney Pain

  • A dull ache that’s usually constant
  • Pain under your rib cage or in your belly
  • Pain in your side usually only one side, but sometimes both hurt
  • Sharp or severe pain that may come in waves
  • Pain that can spread to your groin area or belly

Other symptoms that can happen with kidney pain

The symptoms of your kidney pain depend on its cause. With kidney pain you may also have:

  • Blood in your urine

Stage 5 Kidney Disease Back Pain

Kidney Infection Symptoms Where Is The Back Pain

Opioids in renal failure and dialysis patients. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2004 28:497-504. Arnold R, Verrico P, Davison SN. Opioid use in renal.

Acute kidney injury , previously called acute renal failure , is a rapidly progressive loss of renal function, generally characterized by oliguria and fluid and electrolyte imbalance.

Doctors have staged the progression of chronic kidney disease from stage 1 to stage 5 in the increasing order of its severity.

There are five stages of kidney functioning. Stage 1 denotes normal or high functioning kidneys, whereas stage 5 is end-stage renal failure.

A person with stage 3 chronic kidney disease has moderate kidney damage. This stage is broken up into two: a decrease in glomerular filtration rate for Stage 3A is 45-59 mL/min and a decrease in GFR for Stage 3B is 30-44 mL/min. As kidney function declines waste products can build up in the blood causing a condition known as.

Patients with chronic kidney disease often suffer from chronic pain. It may be difficult to select appropriate analgesic therapy in.

Acquired cystic kidney disease is not the same as polycystic kidney disease , another disease that causes the kidneys to develop multiple cysts. Acquired cystic kidney disease occurs in children and adults who have. chronic kidney disease a condition that develops over many years and may lead to end-stage kidney disease, or ESRD.

7. Back Pain.

Also Check: How To Make A Kidney Stone Pass Fast

What Color Is Urine When Your Kidneys Are Failing

When kidneys are failing, the increased concentration and accumulation of substances in urine lead to a darker color which may be brown, red or purple. The color change is due to abnormal protein or sugar, high levels of red and white blood cells, and high numbers of tube-shaped particles called cellular casts.

You Keep Feeling Confused Or Your Memory Isn’t As Great As It Normally Is

A 2012 study from Temple University found that “decreased kidney function is associated with decreased cognitive functioning in areas such as global cognitive ability, abstract reasoning, and verbal memory.”

On a more extreme note, kidney failure can cause toxins to enter the brain, which can cause delirium, a state of mind that’s marked by major confusion.

Read Also: How To Reverse Polycystic Kidney Disease

Fever And Chills Along With Your Back Pain

This could also mean that you have a urinary tract infection.

If you have any of these symptoms, along with your back pain, you should call your doctor right away.

If your pain is unbearable, is associated with fevers or chills, or you have nausea and vomiting that is preventing you from keeping down fluids or medications, you should seek immediate medical attention, Nguyen says.


Difference Between Back Pain And Kidney Pain

Is my Back Pain due to a Kidney problem? – Dr. Prashanth Jain

The kidneys are organs that sit on both sides of the body, right below the rib cage. They rest against the back muscles, which can make it difficult to tell whether youre experiencing kidney pain or back pain. However, you can distinguish one from the other by looking at where the pain is located, how severe the pain is, and what the accompanying signs are.

So what is the difference between back pain and kidney pain? Kidney pain often affects a higher area of the back compared to back problems which tend to occur on the lumbar spine. If your kidney has a problem, the pain wont go away until it is resolved. On the other hand, back pain can lessen when you adjust the position of your body or if you rest for a couple of days.

You May Like: Why Do You Pass Kidney Stones

When To See A Doctor

Once youve determined whether your pain is coming from your back or your kidneys, consider seeing your doctor for evaluation and treatment.

You should always be seen if you think you have a kidney infection or kidney stone.

You might be able to treat acute back pain thats mild without seeing your doctor, but if it doesnt get better, is more than mild pain, or spreads, you should see your doctor.

These Are Not Myths About Kidney Disease:

  • Diabetes, hypertension and age 60 or greater are the most common reasons for low kidney function.
  • Heart disease, family history of chronic kidney disease and being of an ethnic and/or racial minority group are important predictors of risk.
  • CKD is more common among women than men.
  • More than 35 percent of people aged 20 years or older with diabetes have CKD.
  • More than 20 percent of people aged 20 years or older with hypertension have CKD.
  • Chronic kidney disease is one of the worlds most important public health problems.
  • Chronic kidney disease can often be prevented.

COVID-19 patients can become kidney patients.

You can provide lifesaving support today with a special monthly gift.

Recommended Reading: What Type Of Epithelial Tissue Lines Kidney Tubules

Treatment Of Kidney Infection

Most kidney infections need prompt treatment with antibiotics to stop the infection damaging the kidneys or spreading to the bloodstream.

You may also need painkillers.

If you’re especially vulnerable to the effects of an infection , you may be admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics through a drip.

Most people who are diagnosed and treated promptly with antibiotics feel completely better after about 2 weeks.

People who are older or have underlying conditions may take longer to recover.

Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease

Could Lower Back Pain Be A Sign Of Kidney Problems

This genetic disease causes numerous fluid-filled cysts to develop in the kidneys that often interfere with kidney function. The cysts also cause medical problems like infections, kidney stones, and high blood pressure if left unchecked. Some PKD patients might not experience symptoms for years until it starts causing painful symptoms.

Diagnosis and Possible Causes

ADPKD occurs because of a problem in one of the two genes of the DNA. PKD1 and PKD2 are the genes responsible for creating proteins in the kidney cells, which is why a problem in either of these genes might cause the kidney cells to form cysts.

If the primary physician suspects that their patient has a serious kidney problem, they may refer the patient to a nephrologist. The kidney specialist then asks different questions that help them determine the patients exact condition. They may also perform tests like MRI, CT scan, and DNA test to get an accurate diagnosis.

Care and Treatment

Unfortunately, there isnt a cure for ADPKD. Patients may only treat the health problems associated with the disease to prevent kidney failure. Depending on the complication being treated, doctors might prescribe pain medicines and antibiotics.

Don’t Miss: Can Kidney Stones Cause Leg Pain

Evaluation And Treatment Of Flank Pain

After noting symptoms, the doctor examines the person and usually does a urinalysis to check for red blood cells or excess white blood cells. White blood cells in the urine suggest an infection. If an infection is suspected, a urine culture is usually done. A person with very severe, cramping pain and blood in the urine is very likely to have a kidney stone. A person with milder, steady pain, tenderness when the doctor taps over one kidney, fever, and excess white blood cells in the urine is likely to have a kidney infection.

If a kidney stone is suspected, the doctor often does computed tomography or ultrasonography to determine whether a stone is the cause, the size and location of the stone, and whether it significantly blocks urine flow. An intravenous contrast agent is not used for the CT scan. If the doctor is not sure of the cause of pain, often CT that uses an intravenous contrast agent or another imaging test is done.

The underlying disorder is treated. Mild pain can be relieved by taking acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs . Pain from kidney stones may be severe and may require use of intravenous or oral opioids.

What Are Common Kidney Pain Symptoms

People with kidney pain may experience different symptoms. Some of the most common kidney pain symptoms include:

  • A constant, dull ache in your back.
  • Pain in your sides, under your rib cage or in your abdomen.
  • Severe or sharp pain that comes in waves.
  • Pain that spreads to your groin area.
  • Kidney pain is often accompanied by nausea or vomiting, especially if the pain is due to kidney stones.

Also Check: How Much Is A Kidney Worth In Usa

How Is Kidney Pain Treated

The treatment for kidney pain depends on what is causing it. Be sure to call your doctor if you have any kidney pain. Your doctor may do:

  • A urine test to check for signs of infection
  • Imaging tests, such as an ultrasound or CT scan, to see if your kidneys are injured

Once you know what is causing your pain, your doctor can work with you to find the right treatment.



Most Popular