A kidney stone is also known as a renal calculi or nephrolith. Depending on the location, it is called ureteral, bladder, or kidney stone. About 97% of the stones are found in the kidney and the ureter, while 3% are in the bladder and urethra.
What Causes A Kidney Stone?
They are the result of a buildup of dissolved minerals on the inner lining of the kidneys. This is mainly due to the lack of water in the body. When there is no enough water to dilute the uric acid (a component of urine), the urine becomes more acidic, and an extremely acidic environment in the urine can lead to the formation of kidney stones.
Kidney stones comprise both organic and inorganic substances. Though there are a variety of other compounds, calcium oxalate is the most common constituent found in about 80% of all stones.
Kidney Stone Symptoms
You usually do not experience any symptoms unless the stone moves to the ureter. However, when it does, the following symptoms occur:
Sharp pain in the abdominal area
Blood in urine
Pain or burning while urinating
Vomiting and nausea
A feeling of urine block
Reduced amount of urine excreted
Fever and chills (in case of infection)
Kidney Stone Diagnosis
Kidney stones are mainly diagnosed by-
Physical examination– that reveals colicky pain in the groin and abdominal region-these are warning signs of the condition
Urinalysis-to indicate if blood is there in the urine and subsequent infection
Blood tests-to check complications that accompany kidney stones
Ultrasound– to detect complications
CT scan– to check the state of the ureter, bladder, and kidneys, whether or not a stone exists, location of the stone and to check if the blockage has occurred
X-ray- once kidney stones are diagnosed, X-rays are performed to track the progress of the stone.
Prevention of Kidney Stones
Making small adjustments to the current diet and nutrition plan may help prevent kidney stones formation. Here are the 5 super tips to prevent kidney stones-
Tip 1– Increase- High fluid intake and fiber-rich food in the diet. Don’t forget to take at least eight glasses of fluids (wither water or juices) daily. If
Tip 2 – Avoid High salt foods – as sodium present in salt cause water retention and dehydration. Other salt rice foods include meat, potato chips, and packaged foods.
Tip 3 – Limit/avoid – Meat intake, carbonated drinks, sugar, calorie-rich foods
Tip 4– Avoid foods rich in calcium oxalate such as grapefruit, cranberry, soybeans, potato, spinach, nuts(cashew and peanuts), beets, asparagus. Also, avoid Vitamin C supplements.
Tip 5 – Get enough dietary calcium as calcium found in food helps reduce the risk of stones. Foods that are rich in calcium include orange juice, soy juice, tofu, and some cereals.
Treatment of Kidney Stones
Initially, pain-relieving medications are provided and later based on the location and size; the ideal treatment option will be chosen to manage and remove the stones.
Surgical options to treat kidney stones could be Laser Miniperc PCNL (Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy) or Laser RIRS (Retrograde Intrarenal Surgery) depending on the location and accessibility of the kidney stone.
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