Kidney stones—you’ve heard of them before, no doubt that’s exactly why you’re here, but it’s just that you likely don’t have a lot of knowledge about them. We have developed a short FAQ to serve as your initial guide.
What are kidney stones?
Also known as renal lithiasis, these are stone deposits that can develop in different parts of the urinary tract, such as the bladder and the kidney. These are made from certain kinds of minerals like calcium as well as uric acid and oxalates (the typical culprits). They can vary in size, among other things.
Is there just one type of kidney stone?
No, there are four known kidney stone types. The most common is called calcium stones, which can be either calcium oxalate (which is the more usual) or calcium phosphate).
Cystine stones are genetic while stones can also occur when uric acid is very high.
Struvite stones develop along with infections to the kidney. Because there are many different kinds of stones, the degree of pain, symptoms, chances of reoccurrence, and treatments can also vary.
How long does it take for the stones to form?
Based on some medical information, it may take only about 3 months for the kidney stones to form. However, there are times when they can take more months to a year. Usually, you’ll never know that you have them until you start feeling intense pain, especially around the lower extremity beginning at the lower back.
If you have already kidney stones before, it may take around 5 years before new ones begin to form again. The good news is as long as you follow a better diet and lifestyle, as well as work closely with your doctor, you may prevent them from happening again.
Can children develop them?
Yes, children and teens can develop kidney stones despite their young age. Again, as long as the requirements for their development are present, they can definitely happen. The signs and symptoms are not that much different from those of the adults. Over the last few years, the incidence of renal lithiasis among children seems to increase. This may be attributed to the kind of nutrition or lifestyle they are maintaining.
What are the usual signs and symptoms of kidney stones?
Almost all sufferers realize they have kidney stones when they begin to feel pain in the lower part of the back, where the kidneys are. The pain is often described as severe that they cannot perform their daily tasks or activities anymore. Some of them also pass out due to the pain.
Other signs and symptoms are:
- High fever (which normally occurs during infection)
- Persistent urge to urinate
- Urine that smells foul
- Dark and/or cloudy urine
Is it possible pass these kidney stones?
Yes, some people do get rid of kidney stones this way, but this can only really happen when the stones are still small. Otherwise, they can just get lodged in the bladder, kidney, and other parts of the urinary tract. As they get bigger, they can lead to the symptoms we mentioned above.