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Which Is Worse Kidney Stones Or Gallstones

Treatment Of Kidney Stones

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Kidney stones can be managed in a number of ways, depending upon the size of the stone, your other medical problems, and your overall comfort level. Many small stones will pass with the help of medications, which will keep you comfortable while the stone passes naturally. This process may take a few days to a week or more.

For larger stones, stones that are associated with severe symptoms, or stones that will not pass with medical therapy, surgery is often required.

What Treatments Are Available

Because of the pain caused by kidney stones, many people find that they need pain relief. Many describe it as the worst pain theyve ever felt.

If you have a kidney stone, you will be encouraged to drink a lot of water if you dont have a medical condition that limits the amount you may have. The extra fluid is to help wash the stone through your urinary system.

If the stone doesnt pass within a reasonable amount of time, your doctor may recommend extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy . Shock waves are sent through to the stone to break them down into smaller pieces that can be passed. Sometimes, surgery may be needed.

The stone should be removed because of the high risk of infection, which could in turn lead to sepsis.

A Conversation About Kidney Stones And Gallstones

A kidney stone is a solid piece of material that forms from the crystallization of substances in urine. Its estimated that one in ten people in the U.S. will have a kidney stone at some time. Chances are, you have already experienced a kidney stone or know someone who has experienced one.

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What Are The Complications Of Gallstones

Gallstonescan lead to the following serious complications:

  • Empyema i.e. pus in thegallbladder
  • Gangrene
  • Injury to bile ducts draining theliver
  • Infection within the gallbladder
  • If bile builds up within thegallbladder, causing cholecystitis, the bile might become infected
  • Untreated gallstones destroy thegallbladder tissue which leads to a tear in the gallbladder or causes thegallbladder to burst

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Can Kidney Stones Be Prevented


While not all kidney stones can be prevented, there are ways to lower your risk of developing one or developing another one. The first and foremost way would be to drink enough fluids to ensure your urinary system gets flushed out well.

Your doctor could recommend that you avoid certain types of foods, but that is an individual call. For certain types of stones, sometimes medications are prescribed to help reduce the risk as well.

If you suspect sepsis, call 9-1-1 or go to a hospital and tell your medical professional, I AM CONCERNED ABOUT SEPSIS.

The information here is also available as a , which is a downloadable format for easier printing.

Would you like to share your story about sepsis or read about others who have had sepsis? Please visit Faces of Sepsis, where you will find hundreds of stories from survivors and tributes to those who died from sepsis.

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Hospitalization As A Predictor For Gallstones And Kidney Stones

Hospitalization was a risk factor for gallstones: 52 out of 148 patients with a hospitalization during the last 12 months vs. 96 out of 2323 patients without a hospitalization had a diagnosis of gallstones . This effect remained stable in the subgroup of patients with CD and UC (OR 9.80 and 20.15, respectively p< 0.001.

Kidney stones were also more prevalent in patients with a previous hospitalization and 36 out of 136 patients with a hospitalization vs. 55 out of 2132 patients without a previous hospitalization had a diagnosis of kidney stones . This difference remained robust in the subgroup of patients with CD and UC .

Previous Study Shows Link Between Gallstone And Kidney Stone Risk

A study outlined that those who develop kidney stones have a higher risk of developing gallstones and vice versa. Obesity, diabetes and an unhealthy diet have been linked to the development of stones, but when researchers took those factors into consideration the association still remained.

Even though an association has been found, researchers are still puzzled about what links the two conditions because they have very difference causes gallstones require cholesterol and kidney stones require minerals.

The researchers analyzed three different long-term studies of nurses and doctors who completed health and lifestyle questionnaires. More than 240,000 participants were followed for 14 to 24 years. Approximately 5,100 cases of kidney stones developed along with 18,500 cases of gallstones.

The researchers found that in those with a history of gallstones there was a 26 to 36 percent higher likelihood of developing kidney stones. A prior history of kidney stones increased the risk of developing gallstones by 17 to 51 percent.

Although the association between the two conditions is still unclear, its important that individuals use preventative methods to reduce the risk of both.

As both gallstones and kidney stones have similar prevention methods, staying hydrated, eating well reducing cholesterol and exercising are all integral ways to lower your risk of both.

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Symptoms Associated With Kidney Stones

When a kidney stone starts to pass, symptoms typically occur suddenly and without warning. Sharp, stabbing pain usually develops in your side or back, typically right at the bottom part of the ribcage. Sometimes, the pain will travel downward into the genital area. Stones that have nearly passed into the bladder may be associated with an intense urge to urinate.

Stone pain typically comes and goes. After an initial period of severe pain, you may feel better for a few hours before developing another attack. Many patients will require medication to help with stone pain.

Nausea and vomiting are also very common and are often a reason for hospital admission during stone attacks. You might also see blood in your urine. This can be unsettling to many patients, but is generally not life-threatening.

The most concerning symptom during a stone attack is fever, which indicates that you may have an infection in addition to a kidney stone. This is a potentially life-threatening combination and requires immediate evaluation and treatment.

What Kidney Stone Pain Feels Like And Where Youll Feel It

Natural ways to help with kidney stones and gallstones! ð?

Not all kidney stone pain is the same. For example, the location of pain can change as the stone moves from the kidney to the bladder, says Lieske. When a stone is moving into the ureter, people may feel pain in their flank, or side, or their back, he says.

Notably, if the stone is stuck where the kidney connects to the ureter, the pain can be severe, says Ralph V. Clayman, MD, a professor in the department of urology at the University of California in Irvine. On a scale of 1 to 10, pain can be a 10, he says. There is no position in which the person is comfortable.

This type of pain has a tendency to come and go in 10- to 30-minute cycles. It can also radiate to the groin area and the front of the thigh, he adds.

Once the stone has moved down to the part of the ureter closer to the bladder, a person tends to have pain in the abdomen or groin, says Lieske. Men sometimes feel pain at the tip of their penis.

As the stone moves down the ureter, it can also mimic the pain of other conditions, says Clayman. For example, if the kidney stone is on the right side of the body, it may feel like appendicitis, or inflammation of the appendix. If the stone is on the left side, people may mistake the pain for diverticulitis, inflammation, or an infection within the small or large intestine, he says.

Fortunately, from this point, the stone can usually pass from the bladder out the urethra, which is typically twice the diameter of the ureter, says Clayman.

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What Causes Kidney Stones

Waste products in the blood can occasionally form crystals that collect inside the kidneys.

Over time, the crystals may build up to form a hard stone-like lump.

This is more likely to happen if you:

  • do not drink enough fluids
  • are taking some types of medication
  • have a medical condition that raises the levels of certain substances in your urine

After a kidney stone has formed, your body will try to pass it out when you pee.

If You Think You Have A Kidney Stone

If you have been diagnosed with a kidney stone, please call 362-8200 to schedule an appointment for evaluation and treatment we will do our best to make sure you are seen promptly. You may be directed to the emergency department if you are experiencing intractable nausea, vomiting, pain or fever so that urgent treatment can be given.

We have a very limited number of same-day appointments therefore, it is likely that you will be directed to the emergency department for rapid evaluation. There, they will obtain scans and labs that will help confirm the diagnosis of kidney stones. From that information, we can make an informed decision about your treatment.

If you have recently passed a stone, you should have close follow-up with a urologist. Our team of stone experts can accommodate you at any of our clinic locations.

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How Do I Know If I Have Gallstones Or Kidney Stones

To tell the difference between gallbladder stone and kidney stone pain, pay attention to the location of the pain. Gallbladder and kidney stones both can cause stomach pain, but the former is more likely to be in the middle of the upper stomach or on the upper right side. Gallbladder stone pain may come and go or remain constant for 30 minutes or more, and it may be intense or dull. Kidney stone pain that affects the stomach is usually less precisely located and more consistent than gallbladder stone pain. Youre much more likely, however, to experience kidney stone pain in your lower back. When gallbladder stone pain affects the back, its usually the upper back.

Both gallstones and kidney stones can cause fever, nausea and vomiting. Other symptoms that may occur during gallbladder attacks include:

  • Light-colored stools
  • Yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes, known as jaundice

Additional kidney stones symptoms include:

  • A burning sensation when urinating
  • Blood in the urine
  • Intense urges to urinate

It Has Been Said That Passing A Kidney Stone Is The Closest A Man Will Get To Experiencing The Pain Of Labor And Childbirth But Is That True

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Sure, theres heavy breathing, moaning and pain involved. But, is having a kidney stone comparable to giving birth?

As it turns out, theres no cut-and-dried answer. Kidney stones can range in size, from a grain of sand to the size of a golf ball.

Kidney stone pain can be very severe, and many patients report it as the worst they have ever experienced, according to Mike Nguyen, MD, urologist at USC Urology of Keck Medicine of USC and associate professor of clinical urology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. But, how does this compare to the pain of childbirth? It turns out that the reported amount of pain in both situations is almost identical.

Nguyen points to a Scandinavian study from 1996, in which 70 first-time mothers rated their worst pain during labor as being on average between seven and eight, on a scale of 1-to-10, with 10 being the worst pain imaginable. Mothers with multiple childbirths, who often have a slightly easier experience, rated their worst pain as six to seven.

When we recently surveyed 287 kidney stone patients in 2016, they rated their worst pain as being very similar to that of childbirth, with an average pain score of 7.9 out of 10, Nguyen says.

Symptoms of kidney stones, according to the National Kidney Foundation, Inc., include:

  • Severe pain on one side of your lower back
  • Nagging stomach pain
  • Fever and chills
  • Urine that smells bad or looks cloudy


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Gallstone Vs Kidney Stone: Differences Based On Size Of The Stones

Gallstone usually vary in size and shape. Such stones are usually small however, can grow to be as large as a golf ball. There may be a single large gall stone or may be many small stones in the gall bladder of the affected patient.

Kidney stone also vary in size. In case a kidney stone grows more than 3 mm in diameter, it can obstruct the ureter. A huge number of small kidney stones pass via urination spontaneously. About half of the larger kidney stones, which are larger than 5 mm to 10 mm in diameter pass simultaneously.

Gallstone Vs Kidney Stone: Differences Based On The Causes

Gallstones are caused because of crash diets, ethnicity, obesity, growing age, high fat diet, oral contraceptives, statin drugs etc. There are also hereditary causes of gallstones.

However, Dehydration, calcium supplements, obesity, digestive diseases, growing age, pregnancy, hyperuricemia, ethnicity, etc., along with hereditary causes are some of the causes of kidney stones.

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Does Pain Go Away Immediately After Passing Kidney Stone

The Biden administration is putting final touches on long-sought consumer protections against so-called surprise medical bills Parents and community members have been threatening board members.

A gallbladder attack often happens after.

stones. They are not related to kidney stones, which pass through the ureters and can cause bladder or kidney problems. Gallstones pass into the intestine,

So youve been told that you have kidney stones. You want to know how much pain youre going to have and when its going to end. Read on to find out!

May 18, 2021 · The pain associated with a kidney stone typically isnt 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.

Surgical treatment of kidney stones. If a kidney stone does not pass out of the body with fluids and pain medications, it may have become lodged in the ureter.

Start with just one healthy habit and then build on that by adding one more, and then one more after that until youve created a strong foundation, advises Ilana Muhlstein, M.S., R.D. Read them.

Dr. David Koota answered. Kidney stone, lymph: It is very unlikely passing a kidney is related to the lump in the groin. It the lump is painful or not resolving it should be evaluated. 90,000 U.S. doctors in 147 specialties are here to answer your questions or offer you advice, prescriptions, and more.

Whats The Best Way To Alleviate Gallbladder Pain

Natural Gallstone Treatment To Dissolve Kidney Stones Without Surgery

According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, theres not much you can do to stop a gallbladder attack while its happening.

You may want to apply a heated compress to the area to relieve the discomfort. Usually, the pain will ease once the gallstone has passed.

Traditional treatment options for gallbladder attack include surgery to remove your gallbladder or medicines to help dissolve the gallstones.

You might be able to prevent a gallstone attack by reducing your fatty food intake and maintaining a healthy weight.

Some other measures that could lower your chances of having gallbladder pain include:

  • Eating on a schedule. Skipping meals or fasting may increase the risk of gallstones.
  • Eat more fiber. Foods like veggies, fruits, and whole grains contain lots of fiber.
  • Try to lose weight slowly. If you lose weight too quickly, youre at an increased risk for developing gallstones. Aim for 1 to 2 pounds a week.
  • Exercise. According to the Canadian Society for Intestinal Research, studies show that regular physical activity can lessen your chances of gallstones.
  • Check your meds. Some medicines, such as postmenopausal hormones, may boost the risk of gallbladder disease.
  • Try magnesium.Studies suggest that males who consume the most magnesium have a lower risk of developing gallstone disease.

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Why Passing A Kidney Stone Can Be So Painful

Think of the urinary tract system as your bodys plumbing system, explains Timothy F. Lesser, MD, a urologist at Torrance Memorial Medical Center in Los Angeles. The kidney makes urine, which spills into the ureter, a tiny tube that transports the urine from the kidney down to the bladder. The bladder fills, then empties. “‘Passing a stone’ a stone traveling from the kidney down to the bladder, and traversing the length of the ureter, he says. The stone leaves the urinary tract through the urethra, the tube that transports urine outside the body from the bladder.

A stone passing is so painful because the kidney itself is exquisitely sensitive, explains Dr. Lesser. When a stone blocks the flow of urine through the urinary tract, backed-up urine can put pressure on the kidney, resulting in pain.

It is thought that the kidney itself does not have nerves with classical pain fibers, says John C. Lieske, MD, a consultant in the division of nephrology and hypertension at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. But the tissue surrounding the kidney called the capsule does contain nerve fibers that transmit pain. Backed-up urine swells and expands the capsule, he says.

This swelling activates those nerve fibers, causing signals that are interpreted by the brain as an intense, visceral pain, says Prakash N. Maniam, MD, a urologist at the Medical Specialty Group at Poinciana in Kissimmee, Florida.

Complications Arising If Condition Is Left Untreated

Kidney stones

  • Abscess in the kidney
  • Serious infections of the kidney that impair its normal functioning
  • Formation of urinary fistula which is an unwanted opening between the urinary tract and another organ such as the bowel or vagina
  • Scarring or narrowing-down of the ureters
  • Perforation or formation of holes in the ureters
  • Extravasation: the joint between the kidney and ureters can develop a hole due to blockage by a kidney stone and cause urine to leak
  • Severe loss of kidney function due to a long-standing obstruction from a kidney stone. This can cause pain, fever, sepsis and death too.


  • Empyema or pus in the gallbladder
  • Gangrene: if the gall-stone gets stuck in the opening of the gall-bladder, one of the consequences is reduced blood flow to soft tissue which results in their death or decay
  • It can migrate into the bile ducts and cause injury to bile ducts that drain the liver
  • Various infections within the gallbladder, which can lead to further complications
  • If bile builds up within the gallbladder, the bile can get infected
  • The gall stone can grow big enough to cause a tear in the gallbladder or the gallbladder to burst

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