Kidney stones (Renal Calculi) are solid masses that can be found anywhere along the urinary tract, in your kidneys, bladder, urethra or in the ureters. About half of the people that develop a kidney stone will develop more in time, so it’s imperative to identify the problem and make sure that it is treated by a skilled physician who has experience treating kidney stones.
A kidney stone is a small mineral deposit, usually made of calcium, oxalate and/or phosphate, that can develop for a number of reasons. Lack of fluids, strenuous exercise, urinary tract infections and even severe climates can contribute to the formation of kidney stones. Whatever the cause, they are extremely painful.
Anyone who has ever had to endure kidney stones understands how painful they can be. That’s why it’s so important to treat kidney stones properly, and as quickly as possible. Often, kidney stones can pass through the body without exhibiting any symptoms, but if they are large enough or if they become lodged in the ureter tube, they can be extremely painful, and they must be dealt with. Identifying the problem is the first step to rectifying it. So early identification of the symptoms of kidney stones, when apparent, is the key. These symptoms include:
Kidney stones can pass on their own, and they can be flushed by drinking a lot of fluids, but if you exhibit any of the above symptoms, you should seek the advice of a qualified doctor, even if the stone can be treated at home. In the case that the stone can pass, the doctor still may prescribe medication for pain to make the process easier to handle. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can help, for example, and in some cases, stronger pain medicine could be prescribed.
If the kidney stone causes severe pain due to blockage, size of the stone or infection, further steps and even a medical procedure may be needed to eliminate the stone and relieve the pain. To identify what is needed to deal with the problem, a number of tests may be required, including:
Severe cases, large kidney stones, stones that cause blood in the urine, that can cause kidney damage or recurring urinary tract infections often require more treatment that can be applied at home. An experienced physician will help you choose a treatment that best suits your case, and will draw from the following procedures: