ABSTRACT – Kidney stones also known as Renal Calculi are the accumulation of solid masses of dissolved minerals and...
Kidney Stones are the result of a buildup of dissolved minerals on the inner lining of the kidneys.
They usually consist of calcium oxalate but may be composed of several other compounds.
It can grow to the size of a golf ball while maintaining a sharp, crystalline structure.
The stones may be small and pass unnoticed through the urinary tract, but they can also cause extreme pain as they leave the body.
Kidney stones and ruler
It can vary in size. Some have been known to grow as large as golf balls.
It is usually remains symptomless until it moves into the ureter. When symptoms become apparent, they commonly include:
severe pain in the groin and/or side
blood in urine
vomiting and nausea
white blood cells or pus in the urine
reduced amount of urine excreted
burning sensation during urination
persistent urge to urinate
fever and chills if there is an infection
Stones that remain inside the body can also lead to many complications, including blockage of the the tube connecting the kidney to the bladder, which obstructs the path that urine uses to leave the body.
According to research, people with kidney stones have a significantly higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease.
The leading cause of this disease is a lack of water in the body.
Stones are more commonly found in individuals who drink less than the recommended eight to ten glasses of water a day.
When there is not enough water to dilute the uric acid, a component of urine, the urine becomes more acidic.
An excessively acidic environment in urine can lead to the formation of kidney stones.
Medical conditions such as Crohn’s disease, urinary tract infections, renal tubular acidosis, hyperparathyroidism, medullary sponge kidney, and Dent’s disease increase the risk of tis disease.
They are more common among males than females. Most people who experience stones do so between the ages of 30 and 50 years. A family history of kidney stones also increases one’s chances of developing them.
Similarly, a previous kidney stone occurrence increases the risk that a person will develop subsequent stones in the future if preventative action is not taken.
Certain medications can increase the risk of developing kidney stones. Scientists found that topiramate (Topamax), a drug commonly prescribed to treat seizures and migraine headaches, can increase the likelihood of kidney stones developing.
Additionally, it is possible that long-term use of vitamin D and calcium supplements cause high calcium levels, which can contribute to kidney stones.
Additional risk factors for kidney stones include diets that are high in protein and sodium but low in calcium, a sedentary lifestyle, obesity, high blood pressure, and conditions that affect how calcium is absorbed in the body such as gastric bypass surgery, inflammatory bowel disease, and chronic diarrhea.
Lithotripsy treatment for kidney stones
Lithotripsy involves sending a shockwave into the kidney stone to break it into smaller pieces.
Treating kidney stones is primarily focused on symptom management. Passing a stone can be very painful.
If a person has a history of kidney stones, home treatment may be suitable. Individuals who have never passed a kidney stone should speak with a doctor.
If hospital treatment is needed, an individual may be rehydrated via an intravenous (IV) tube, and anti-inflammatory medication may also be administered.
Narcotics are often used in an effort to make the pain of passing the stone tolerable. Antiemetic medication can be used in people experiencing nausea and vomiting.
In some cases, a urologist can perform a shock wave therapy called lithotripsy. This is a treatment that breaks the kidney stone into smaller pieces and allow it to pass.
People with large stones located in regions that do not allow for lithotripsy may receive surgical procedures, such as removal of the stone via an incision in the back or by inserting a thin tube into the urethra.