Symptoms of kidney stones include:
- Pain in the back, radiating towards groin which is extremely severe. Sometime it may be associated with blood in urine.
- It’s common for people with a kidney stone to have nausea and vomiting.
- Pain or burning sensation during urination.
- Fever and chills are signs that you have an infection in your kidney or another part of your urinary tract.
Some kidney stones are “silent,” meaning they cause no symptoms. Often, a person knows they have stones when they have sudden pain while the stone is passing or detected incidentally on investigations
Prevention of kidney stones:
- Maintain liquid intake, mainly water, is the most important thing you can do to prevent kidney stones.
- Keep your weight in control as obesity increases your risk of kidney stones.Exercise regularly
- Limit your intake of salt. It is a part of many canned, packaged foods.
- Limit your intake of oxalates, the organic compounds found in a number of foods, including spinach and sweet potatoes. As oxalates bind easily to calcium, which then help form kidney stones.
- Eating excess animal protein may increase your chances of developing kidney stones. Eat more fruits and vegetables, which make the urine less acid. When the urine is less acid, then stones may be less able to form
- Maintain your calcium intake from foods. The right amount of calcium can help to prevent stones.
- Eat citrus fruits like lemons and limes that are high in citrate, which helps prevent kidney stones.
See your doctor about making diet changes if you have had a stone or think you could be at increased risk for getting a kidney stone.
- Diagnosis of kidney stones is best accomplished using an ultrasound, intravenous pyleography (IVP), or a CT scan. Most small kidney stones will pass through the ureter to the bladder by their own with time.
- Treatment includes pain-control medications and, medications to facilitate the passage of stone in urine.
- If needed, lithotripsy or surgical techniques may be used for stones which do not pass by their own.eg.
- Shock wave lithotripsy, used to treat stones in the kidney and ureter. Shock waves are focused on the stone using X-rays or ultrasound to pinpoint the stone. Repeated firing of shock waves on the stone usually causes it to break into small pieces. These smaller pieces of stones pass out in the urine over a few weeks.
- Ureteroscopy, used to treat stones in the kidney and ureter. The procedure involves passing a very small telescope, called an ureteroscope, into the bladder, up the ureter and into the kidney. Once the stone is located, it is broken up using laser/pneumatic energy and then removed with a basket-like device.
- Percutaneous nephrolithotomy/ mini perc; is used to treat large stones in the kidney. The procedure involves making small cut in the back or side, to allow a rigid instrument called a nephroscope to be passed into the kidney where the stone is located. An instrument passed through the nephroscope breaks up the stone and suctions out the pieces.
Long term consequences of having a kidney stone
Kidney stones increase the risk of developing chronic kidney disease or renal failure if not treated. If you have had one stone, you are at increased risk of having another stone. Those who have developed one stone are at approximately 50% risk for developing another within 5 years.