The kidney stones or kidney stones form in the kidneys from substances that are part of the urine and eliminate the kidney itself. They could be as small as a sand grain or several centimeters, and the reasons why they occur are various.
By influence, genetics appears in environmental factors and eating habits. Low fluid intake is the most important factor in the origin of the problem. People who live in arid areas or areas with high temperatures are more likely to produce stones.
The stones are composed of minerals such as calcium, oxalate, uric acid, and others, coupled to form structures of various sizes and shapes.
Crystallized Urine Particles
A kidney stone, also known as a kidney stone or renal lithiasis, is a solid mass that forms in this body organ when the particles. Minerals or acid salts can form it that our urine contains and in crystallize usually dissolved. These masses can stay there or travel to the ureter and are usually, but not always, expelled when urinating. If not, they can cause problems such as difficulty passing urine and pain.
Its dimensions can be millimeters, from those popularly known as “grits” to several centimeters. They usually show a brown or yellowish color, with more or less smooth and regular contours, or irregular. There may be one or more kidney stones at the same time.
Chances To Get Kidney Stones In One In Ten People
It is a fairly common disease. One in ten people will suffer a kidney stone at some point in their life.
Typically, the incidence increases after 20 and peaks between the ages of 40 and 60, especially in men. There is also a second peak of rate after the age of 60 in women.
It affects men more than women, approximately two to one, although this difference seems to be narrowing in recent years.
How Many Most Common Types Of Kidney Stones Form?
As we know, there are mainly four types of kidney stones Form or stones:
They are the most common (they represent between 60% -80% of all). The calcium that our body does not use goes to the kidneys. It is retained and can combine with substances such as oxalate – present in foods such as spinach or vitamin C supplements – to form the stone. Phosphate and carbonate are other substances sometimes combined with calcium. Up to 40% of calcium stones are of mixed composition.
5% -15% of stones are of this type. They are more common in women and are often the result of repeated or chronic infections in the urinary system. They can become large and block the kidney, ureters, or bladder.
Uric Acid Stones
There are chances to appear 5% to 10% of stones. People who take a lot of meat, seafood, and fish can also appear in cases in which the urine contains an excessive amount of this acid are more common. Such as in patients with gout, blood disorders, undergoing chemotherapy, or who have suffered rapid weight loss, among other cases.
1% of kidney stones have this composition. Although they affect both sexes, they are rare and can lead to a genetic disorder called cystinuria. It leads the kidneys to dump too much cysteine, an amino acid present in muscles, nerves, and other parts of the body, into the urine.
Diet And Family Inheritance, Risk Factors
Several factors can influence the appearance of kidney stones:
Having A Family History
We are more likely to develop stones if a relative of ours has suffered them before. In fact, according to some experts, this condition multiplies the risk of suffering them by three.
A diet rich in fats, sugars, and animal proteins and the ingestion of high sodium (salt) increases the risk of suffering calcium stones.
The Amount Of Fluid You Swallow
Dehydration can cause your urine to be too concentrated, which, in turn, favors the formation of crystals.
People can derive metabolic disorders from genetic diseases, such as amino acid cystine, primary hyperoxaluria, or cystic fibrosis. The concentrations of substances in the urine change, which produces the formation of stones.
Urinary Tract Infections And Some Kidney Disorders
If Urinary tract infections and some kidney disorders, For example, cystic kidney diseases, nephrocalcinosis which excess calcium in this organ, congenital disabilities such as sponge or horseshoe marrow kidney, etc.
Urinary Tract Abnormalities
Urinary tract abnormalities narrow, dilation, and obstruction at the junction of the ureter with the kidney. These abnormalities obstruct the urinary flow and create areas where urine stagnates, facilitating stones formation.
Gout, diseases of the thyroid or parathyroid glands, or others of a gastrointestinal nature such as Crohn’s disease, among others, also increase the risk of suffering from stones. Obesity, diabetes mellitus, or high blood pressure are risk factors that favor its appearance.
The intake of some medications can also influence the appearance of kidney stones of different compositions. However, in most cases, after the appearance of the stones, an underlying disease is not identified.
Very Severe Pain
Based on factors for the symptoms and signs of kidney stones, like the size and location of the stone. The most common are:
- Severe pain (renal colic): occurs when the stone blocks urine flow through the ureter. It is usually a sharp pain in the lower back and side, radiating to the groin, thigh, or genitals. This pain is often described as one of the most painful experiences, even more, painful than giving birth.
- Blood in the urine.
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sometimes urine with a bad smell or cloudy appearance.
- Pain when urinating
- Fever and/or chills
- Urine infections
If the stones are small or do not block urine flow, they may not cause symptoms.
From Anti-inflammatories To Surgery
There is a 95% chance of removing a small stone in the six weeks following kidney colic. For this, there are several types of kidney stones treatments for different kidney stone form:
- Traditionally, experts recommended that, in the case of small or asymptomatic stones. You must drink six to eight glasses of water a day to increase urine and help expel the stone. However, other current sources recommend avoiding excessive hydration in the acute phase of colic because it could worsen symptoms. There is no clear evidence that overhydration reduces stone expulsion times.
- The application of local heat is also useful as a complementary treatment to relieve pain and nausea.
- In the case of severe pain, it is necessary to take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as diclofenac. In some cases, different pain relievers or even hospitalization may be necessary. It is using other medications to treat calculus, favoring its expulsion or dissolution.
- Suppose medications do not work and symptoms persist. In that case, we need to require active treatment to remove the stone from the urinary tract and allow adequate urine flow. Since kidney stones can cause kidney infection and permanent organ damage, or very serious complications serious. These types of kidney stones treatments include those that consist of breaking the stone into very small pieces or directly trapping it whole through the ureter.
- For large and/or difficult-to-access stones not approachable by the above techniques, surgery is required.