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Kidney stones: symptoms causes and remedies


21st May 2024 | 2 Views

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Kidney stones are formed in the body when certain substances in the urine, such as calcium, oxalate, and uric acid, become highly concentrated and crystalize. These crystals then stick together and form a solid mass, known as a kidney stone.

Kidney stones are small, hard deposits of mineral and acid salts that form in the kidneys and can be very painful when they pass through the urinary tract. While there are various types of kidney stones, the most common ones are composed of calcium oxalate.

There are several factors that can contribute to the formation of kidney stones, including:
Dehydration: When the body doesn’t have enough water, the urine becomes concentrated, which increases the likelihood of crystal formation.

Diet: Consuming foods that are high in salt, sugar, and animal protein can increase the risk of developing kidney stones. Foods that are high in oxalate, such as spinach, rhubarb, and chocolate, can also contribute to stone formation.

Genetics: Some people are more prone to developing kidney stones due to their genetic makeup.

Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as hyperparathyroidism, cystic fibrosis, and inflammatory bowel disease, can increase the risk of developing kidney stones.

Medications: Certain medications, such as diuretics and calcium-based antacids, can increase the risk of stone formation.

Once a kidney stone has formed, it can either remain in the kidney or travel down the ureter (the tube that connects the kidney to the bladder) and cause pain as it passes through the urinary tract.
The symptoms of kidney stones can vary depending on the size and location of the stone, but they commonly include:

Severe pain: The most prominent symptom of kidney stones is intense pain, usually felt in the back or side below the ribs. The pain can radiate to the lower abdomen and groin area. It is often described as sharp, cramping, or colicky in nature.

Hematuria: Blood in the urine, known as hematuria, is another common symptom. The urine may appear pink, red, or brownish in color. Sometimes, the blood may not be visible to the naked eye, and microscopic analysis is required to detect it.

Urinary changes: Kidney stones can cause changes in urination patterns. You may experience frequent urination, urgency to urinate, or a feeling of incomplete emptying of the bladder. There may also be a need to urinate more frequently during the night.

Cloudy or foul-smelling urine: Kidney stones can lead to changes in urine appearance and odor. The urine may appear cloudy or have a strong, unpleasant odor.

Nausea and vomiting: Some individuals with kidney stones may experience nausea and vomiting, which can be a result of severe pain or the body’s response to the obstruction caused by the stone.

Fever and chills: In certain cases, kidney stones can lead to an infection in the urinary tract, causing symptoms such as fever and chills. If you experience these symptoms along with severe pain, it is essential to seek medical attention promptly.

It’s important to note that not everyone with kidney stones will experience all of these symptoms. Some stones may be asymptomatic until they move and cause a blockage or irritation. If you suspect you have kidney stones or are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

Here are some remedies for kidney stones:

Drink plenty of water: Drinking enough water is one of the most effective ways to prevent kidney stones. It helps to flush out the minerals and acid salts that can form stones. Aim for at least 8-10 glasses of water per day.

Lemon juice and olive oil: The citric acid in lemon juice can help dissolve kidney stones, and the olive oil can help ease their passage through the urinary tract. Mix together ¼ cup of lemon juice and ¼ cup of olive oil and drink it straight down, followed by a glass of water.

Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar can help dissolve kidney stones and prevent future ones from forming. Mix two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with a glass of water and drink it daily.

Kidney-friendly diet: Eating a diet that’s low in salt and animal protein and high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help prevent kidney stones. Foods rich in calcium such as low-fat milk and yogurt can help too.

Herbal remedies: There are several herbs that may help prevent and treat kidney stones, including nettle leaf, dandelion root, and horsetail. However, always speak to your healthcare provider before trying any herbal remedies.

Pain relief: Over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help relieve pain associated with kidney stones. However, if the pain is severe, you may need prescription medication or even surgery to remove the stones.

If you suspect you have kidney stones, it’s important to seek medical advice. Your doctor can provide a diagnosis and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan for you.

Hilarius Maiong



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