When To See Your Urologist
While it would be nice to avoid the doctors office for kidney pain, its not always possible. Sometimes, the pain is not treatable using an at-home remedy and youll need to see your doctor or urologist to get relief. It should also be noted that just because you experience pain relief, doesnt mean that your infection is gone. To make sure that the infection doesnt spread to other parts of your body and cause further complications, you need to get a proper diagnosis and treat the problem. If you have a high fever, blood in your urine, vomiting, or chills, see your doctor immediately.1 If you experience back, groin, or abdominal pain, see your doctor.3 always better to seek medical treatment early to treat any serious infections and reduce the risks of complications or severe problems.
If you have kidney stones, but the pain is persistent and youre unable to pass them on your own, your urologist will recommend additional treatments. There are a number of different things that can be done to reduce the size of kidney stones and make them easier to pass naturally. Call your doctor if the pain persists and youre unable to pass kidney stones on your own.
Drink Plenty Of Fluids
Theres no magic behind the cliché advice to drink eight glasses of water a day, but its a good goal precisely because it encourages you to stay hydrated. Regular, consistent water intake is healthy for your kidneys.
Water helps clear sodium and toxins from your kidneys. It also lowers your risk of chronic kidney disease.
Aim for at least 1.5 to 2 liters in a day. Exactly how much water you need depends largely on your health and lifestyle. Factors like climate, exercise, gender, overall health, and whether or not youre pregnant or breastfeeding are important to consider when planning your daily water intake.
People who have previously had kidney stones should drink a bit more water to help prevent stone deposits in the future.
Be Aware Of The Amount Of Otc Pills You Take
If you regularly take over-the-counter pain medication, you may be causing kidney damage. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , including ibuprofen and naproxen, can damage your kidneys if you take them regularly for chronic pain, headaches, or arthritis.
People with no kidney issues who take the medicine occasionally are likely in the clear. However, if you use these medicines daily, you could be risking your kidneys health. Talk with your doctor about kidney-safe treatments if youre coping with pain.
If youre at high risk of kidney damage or kidney disease, its a good idea to have regular kidney function tests. The following people may benefit from regular screening:
- people who are over 60 years old
- people who were born at a low birth weight
- people who have cardiovascular disease or have family with it
- people who have or have a family history of high blood pressure
- people who are obese
- people who believe they may have kidney damage
A regular kidney function test is a great way to know your kidneys health and to check for possible changes. Getting ahead of any damage can help slow or prevent future damage.
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Monitor Weight And Eat A Healthy Diet
People who are overweight or obese are at risk for a number of health conditions that can damage the kidneys. These include diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease.
A healthy diet thats low in sodium, processed meats, and other kidney-damaging foods may help reduce the risk of kidney damage. Focus on eating fresh ingredients that are naturally low-sodium, such as cauliflower, blueberries, fish, whole grains, and more.
Drink Apple Cider Vinegar
The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar helps kidney stones dissolve. Add 2 tablespoons to 6-8 ounces of water and drink it throughout the day to reap the benefits. You can also use it as a salad dressing if youd rather taste it on food.
If youre a diabetic, watch your blood sugar levels when drinking apple cider vinegar.
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Visit The Spine & Rehab Group For Spinal Pain
If youre experiencing severe symptoms of back pain, its best to consult with a doctor immediately.
With over 15 years of experience, our doctors at the Spine & Rehab Group can help diagnose and alleviate your spinal pain with non-surgical but effective treatment plans. For a healthy spine, book an appointment online with any of our NY and NJ locations today.
How To Distinguish Back Pain From Kidney Pain
As back pain is a common experience for many people, its easy to think that its just another ordinary ache that will go away on its own. However, your kidneys may be the organs that are actually causing you pain. It can be tricky to distinguish what exactly is causing your discomfort because of how close the pain areas are. Heres a quick guide to help you figure out if youre experiencing kidney pain or back pain:
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How Is Kidney Disease Treated
How kidney disease is treated depends on the particular problem and what’s causing it:
- Kidney infections are treated with .
- Medicines to decrease may help with nephritis and nephrotic syndrome.
- Medicines can treat high blood pressure or help the kidneys make extra pee if fluid or swelling is causing a kidney problem.
- A person might need to eat a special diet that limits salt or other things.
Occasionally, if medicines and other treatments don’t work, the kidneys can stop working well. They may not clear enough of the body’s waste products and excess water. In that case, a person might need dialysis. This process uses an artificial filtering system to do the job of the kidneys when they can’t.
Some people who need dialysis on a permanent basis might be candidates for a kidney transplant. This means they get a donated kidney from another person. Someone who gets a transplanted kidney no longer needs dialysis to clean the blood of waste products and remove excess water. The donated, healthy kidney takes over the job.
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 Does It Mean If Your Kidneys Are Hurting
Common causes of kidney pain are mainly urinary tract infections, kidney infections, and kidney stones. However, there are many other causes of kidney pain, including penetrating and blunt trauma that can result in a lacerated kidney.If a woman is pregnant and has kidney pain, she should contact her doctor.
Renal Tumors Or Cysts
Renal tumors or cysts do not typically cause pain unless the growth is advanced or the disbursement is extensive. The three most common growth abnormalities include:
- Renal adenoma: A type of benign tumor that can grow to a substantial size
- Renal cell carcinoma : A type of cancer that usually begins in the tubules of the kidneys
- Polycystic kidney disease : An inherited disorder in which benign, fluid-filled cysts proliferate throughout the kidneys
The pain would most often be unilateral and accompanied by hematuria, either visible or invisible .
If cancer is involved, persistent malaise and unexplained weight loss are telltale signs suggestive of an advanced malignancy.
PKD may also be symptom-free until such time as the formation of cysts causes structural damage to the kidney. In addition to flank pain, usually bilateral, PKD may cause progressively worsening symptoms, including headaches, high blood pressure, hematuria, abdominal pain and swelling, recurrent kidney stones, recurrent UTIs, and renal failure.
As opposed to many of the other renal conditions, PKD is associated with excessive urination rather than impaired urination. The most common form of PKD, known as autosomal dominant PKD, manifests with symptoms when patients are in their 30s and 40s. Around 10% will advance to renal failure.
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How Is Kidney Disease Diagnosed
If you might have a kidney condition, you’ll probably visit a pediatric nephrologist , a doctor who specializes in treating kidney diseases. The doctor will ask you about any concerns and symptoms you have, your past health, your family’s health, any medicines you’re taking, any allergies you have, and other issues. This is called your .
One test commonly used to detect kidney conditions is a renal ultrasound. This picture of the kidneys is made using sound waves. It shows how big the kidney is, its shape, and whether there is anything unusual, such as blockage of the urine flow or swelling. An ultrasound is safe and painless.
Sometimes doctors order a test called a renal scan. A dye is injected into the veins and then pictures are taken that show how blood flows through the kidneys. This tells a doctor whether pee is being made normally. In another test, called a kidney biopsy, the doctor uses a special needle to remove a tiny piece of the kidney to check under a microscope.
How To Relieve Kidney Pain
This article was medically reviewed by Victor Catania, MD. Dr. Catania is a board certified Family Medicine Physician in Pennsylvania. He received his MD from the Medical University of the Americas in 2012 and completed his residency in Family Medicine at the Robert Packer Hospital. He is a member of the American Board of Family Medicine.There are 21 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 20 testimonials and 80% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 273,263 times.
Research suggests that if you experience pain in your back between your ribs and your buttocks, or even down your sides into your groin area, you may be having kidney pain.XResearch source Although back pain is not always caused by your kidneys, you should talk to your doctor to make sure you don’t have any serious medical conditions. Experts note that treating your kidney pain will depend on its cause, and your doctor can make the best recommendations for your situation.XResearch source
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Causes Of Kidney Infection
A kidney infection usually happens when bacteria, often a type called E. coli, get into the tube that carries urine out of your body .
The bacteria travel up to your bladder, causing cystitis, and then up into your kidneys.
E. coli bacteria normally live in your bowel, where they cause no harm.
They can be transferred from your bottom to your genitals during sex or if youâre not careful when wiping your bottom after going to the loo.
A kidney infection can sometimes develop without a bladder infection. For example, if you have a problem with your kidney, such as kidney stones, or if you have diabetes or a weakened immune system.
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.
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Can Children Get Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are found in children as young as 5 years. In fact, this problem is so common in children that some hospitals conduct ‘stone’ clinics for pediatric patients. The increase in the United States has been attributed to several factors, mostly related to food choices. The two most important reasons are not drinking enough fluids and eating foods that are high in salt. Kids should eat less salty potato chips and French fries. There are other salty foods: sandwich meats, canned soups, packaged meals, and even some sports drinks. Sodas and other sweetened beverages can also increase the risk of stones if they contain high fructose corn syrup.
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What Causes Hydronephrosis
Hydronephrosis diagnosed in pregnancy is usually mild. It’s thought to be caused by an increase in the amount of urine your baby produces in the later stages of pregnancy.
In more severe cases, it may be caused by a blockage in the flow of urine from the kidneys to the bladder, backflow of urine from the bladder to the kidneys, or a blockage in the flow of urine out of the bladder.
In adults, hydronephrosis is commonly caused by:
Read more about the causes of hydronephrosis.
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When To See Your Gp
See your GP if you have a fever and persistent tummy, lower back or genital pain, or if you notice a change to your usual pattern of urination.
Most kidney infections need prompt treatment with antibiotics to stop the infection from damaging the kidneys or spreading to the bloodstream. You may also need painkillers.
If you’re especially vulnerable to the effects of an infection for example, if you have a pre-existing health condition or are pregnant, you may be admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics through an intravenous drip.
After taking antibiotics, you should feel completely better after about two weeks.
In rare cases, a kidney infection can cause further problems. These include blood poisoning and a build-up of pus in the kidney called an abscess.
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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When To See Your Doctor
Kidney pain is almost always a sign that something is wrong with your kidney. You should see your doctor as soon as possible to determine whats causing your pain.
If the condition that has caused kidney pain isnt treated promptly and appropriately, your kidneys can stop working, which is called kidney failure.
Its especially important to see your doctor right away if your pain is severe and started suddenly because this is often caused by a serious problem such as renal vein thrombosis or bleeding into your kidney that needs emergency treatment.
Blockage Of Blood To The Kidney
A blockage of blood to the kidney is called a renal infarction or a renal vein thrombosis. This happens when the blood supply to and from the kidney is suddenly slowed or stopped. There are several causes, including a blood clot.
Blood flow blockages to the kidney typically happens on one side. Symptoms include:
- severe side or flank pain
- lower back pain or ache
- stomach tenderness
- blood in the urine
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Causes Of Kidney Pain
Kidney pain has many possible causes. These organs are connected to others like your bladder and ureters, where you store and get rid of urine.
Kidney stones. Intense, sudden, stabbing pain may be a kidney stone. These are mineral deposits that can grow large enough to block a ureter, a tube that connects your kidney and bladder. If that happens, you’ll feel sharp pain or cramps in your back or side. It can also spread out to your groin. As you try to pee out the stone, you might feel waves of pain.
Kidney infection. Also called pyelonephritis, this infection could cause discomfort in one or both kidneys. You may feel pain in your back, in your side or both sides under your ribs, or in your groin. You’ll also have a fever. Urinary tract infections also cause discomfort in this organ.
Kidney swelling. This condition, called hydronephrosis, can happen if your kidneys are blocked. Your urine can’t drain the way it should and builds up in your kidneys. This can happen in one or both kidneys and sometimes it causes pain.
Kidney cysts. You may not feel a simple kidney cyst until it grows larger. Once it gets big, you might feel a dull pain in your side or back, or feel pain in the upper part of your belly.
Polycystic kidney disease. This genetic disease causes many cysts to grow in your kidneys. They may cause you to feel a pain in your back or side.