Kidney stones are also known as renal calculi, nephrolithiasis, or urolithiasis. The kidney stones are nothing but hard deposits of salts and minerals from inside the kidneys. They tend to develop in both or just one kidney and more frequently affect people from age 30–60. The kidney stones can also develop in the ureter, the tube that helps connect the kidneys to the bladder. So, they can be extremely painful and might lead to kidney infections if not treated sooner. Kidneys are two bean-shaped organs roughly 4 inches in length and located towards the back abdomen on both sides of the spine. The kidneys help to remove or discharge waste from blood through urination.
Kidney stones signs
Small kidney stones might not have any symptoms. Usually, small stones might discharge during urination without mild discomfort. In contrast, large kidney stones can cause severe symptoms, including:
- Abdomen pain
- Severe pain radiates to the groin and lower abdomen
- Burning sensation while urinating
- Change of urine color
- Smelly urine
- Often urination
- Vomiting and nausea
- Random episodes of pain that keep coming back
Kidney stones causes
- Blood collects waste products and forms crystals that stones inside the kidneys.
- When you don’t drink adequate water
- Specific medications
- Certain medical conditions that raise some substances in urine
Kidney stones treatment and prevention
Small kidney stones pass through urination, so it doesn’t require any treatments. Bigger stones will be broken up or removed through surgery. People who have had kidney stones are more likely to develop another within the following five years. The top preventive step to avoid stones is to drink plenty of water, so you don’t dehydrate. It’s crucial to keep your urine pale in color to prevent waste from forming inside the kidneys.
When to consult a doctor for kidney stones?
- When the pain is severe
- Blood in urine, smelly urine, or when you find it hard to urinate
- Pain accompanied by chills and fever
- Nausea and vomiting
Reviewed by – Dr. Priyanka, MBBS MD Microbiology
Page last reviewed: 23 JUNE 2022