Kidney stones are common, but the more you know about these painful little kidney block, the better prepared you will be if you ever get one.
What is a kidney stone?
A kidney stone is a solid formation that forms in a kidney when there are high levels of certain substances in the urine. These substances are normally found in the urine and do not cause problems at lower levels. A stone may stay in the kidney or travel down the urinary tract. Kidney stones vary in size. A small stone may pass on its own, causing little or no pain. A larger stone may get stuck along the urinary tract. A stone that gets stuck can block the flow of urine, causing severe pain or bleeding.
You may have a kidney stone if you:
- have pain while urinating
- see blood in your urine
- feel a sharp pain in your back or lower abdomen
The pain may last for a short or long time. You may also experience nausea and vomiting with the pain. If you have a small stone that passes on its own easily, you may not have symptoms at all.
What causes kidney stones?
Kidney stones are caused by high levels of calcium, oxalate and phosphorus in the urine. Some foods may cause kidney stones in certain people. You may be more likely to get a kidney stone if you have:
- a condition that affects levels of substances in your urine that can cause stones to form
- a family history of kidney stones
- repeating, or recurrent, urinary tract infections
- blockage of your urinary tract
- digestive problems
You may also be more likely to get a kidney stone if you don’t drink enough fluids or if you take certain medicines.
If you think you may have a kidney stone or if you would like more information about them, contact us today.Tags: family health, family medicine, kidney, kidney care, kidney health, kidney stones, what is a kidney stone