Kidney stones

Definition
(also called renal calculi, nephrolithiasis or urolithiasis) are hard deposits made of minerals and salts that form inside your kidneys.
Kidney stones can affect any part of your urinary tract — from your kidneys to your bladder. Often, stones form when the urine becomes concentrated, allowing minerals to crystallize and stick together.

Passing kidney stones can be quite painful, but the stones usually cause no permanent damage if they’re recognized in a timely fashion. Depending on your situation, you may need nothing more than to take pain medication and drink lots of water to pass a kidney stone. In other instances — for example, if stones become lodged in the urinary tract, are associated with a urinary infection or cause complications — surgery may be needed.
Preventive treatment may be recommended to reduce your risk of recurrent kidney stones if you’re at increased risk of developing them again.

Symptoms
A kidney stone usually will not cause symptoms until it moves around within your kidney or passes into your ureters — the tubes connecting the kidneys and the bladder. If it becomes lodged in the ureters, it may block the flow of urine and cause the kidney to swell and the ureter to spasm, which can be very painful. At that point, you may experience these signs and symptoms:

•Severe, sharp pain in the side and back, below the ribs
•Pain that radiates to the lower abdomen and groin
•Pain that comes in waves and fluctuates in intensity
•Pain or burning sensation while urinating
•Pink, red or brown urine
•Cloudy or foul-smelling urine
•A persistent need to urinate, urinating more often than usual or urinating in small amounts
•Nausea and vomiting
•Fever and chills if an infection is present

Causes
Kidney stones often have no definite, single cause, although several factors may increase your risk.
Kidney stones form when your urine contains more crystal-forming substances — such as calcium, oxalate and uric acid — than the fluid in your urine can dilute. At the same time, your urine may lack substances that prevent crystals from sticking together, creating an ideal environment for kidney stones to form.

Risk factors
1.Family or personal history.
If someone in your family has had kidney stones, you’re more likely to develop stones, too. If you’ve already had one or more kidney stones, you’re at increased risk of developing another.

2.Dehydration
Not drinking enough water each day can increase your risk of kidney stones. People who live in warm, dry climates and those who sweat a lot may be at higher risk than others.

3.Diet
Eating a diet that’s high in protein, sodium (salt) and sugar may increase your risk of some types of kidney stones. This is especially true with a high-sodium diet. Too much salt in your diet increases the amount of calcium your kidneys must filter and significantly increases your risk of kidney stones.

4.Obesity
High body mass index (BMI), large waist size and weight gain have been linked to an increased risk of kidney stones.

5.Digestive diseases and surgery
Gastric bypass surgery, inflammatory bowel disease or chronic diarrhea can cause changes in the digestive process that affect your absorption of calcium and water, increasing the amounts of stone-forming substances in your urine.

Other medical conditions such as repeated urinary tract infections can increase your risk of kidney stones.

Certain supplements and medications, such as vitamin C, dietary supplements, laxatives (when used excessively), calcium-based antacids, and certain medications used to treat migraines or depression, can increase your risk of kidney stones.

Diagnosis
1.Full Blood Count
2.Kidney Function Test(E/U/Cr)+uric acid
Blood tests may reveal too much calcium or uric acid in your blood and help monitor the health of your kidneys.

3.Urinalysis
4.Urine M/C/S
The 24-hour urine collection test may show that you’re excreting too many stone-forming minerals or too few stone-preventing substances.

5.Renal ultrasound
6.Plain abdominal xray
7.Computerized Tomography(CT) urogram
Imaging tests may show kidney stones in your urinary tract. CT may reveal even tiny stones.

8.Stone analysis
You may be asked to urinate through a strainer to catch stones that you pass. Lab analysis will reveal the makeup of your kidney stones.

Treatment
Treatment for kidney stones varies, depending on the type of stone and the cause.
Most small kidney stones won’t require invasive treatment. You may be able to pass a small stone by:

1.Drinking water
Drinking as much as 2 to 3liters a day will keep your urine dilute and may prevent stones from forming.

2.Pain relievers. Passing a small stone can cause some discomfort. To relieve mild pain, you may need pain relievers.

3.Medical therapy
Medications can help you pass your kidney stone. This type of medication relaxes the muscles in your ureter, helping you pass the kidney stone more quickly and with less pain.

4.Surgery
Certain procedures can be employed to get rid of the stone if medical therapy fails and they include
•extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL)
•percutaneous nephrolithotomy
•ureteroscopy

Prevention
Prevention of kidney stones may include a combination of lifestyle changes and medications.

Lifestyle changes
1.Drink water throughout the day.(3L/day)
Drinking enough fluids helps you pass about 2 liters of urine a day.
If you live in a hot, dry climate or you exercise frequently, you may need to drink even more water to produce enough urine. If your urine is light and clear, you’re likely drinking enough water.

2.Eat fewer oxalate-rich foods.
These include rhubarb, beets, okra, spinach, Swiss chard, sweet potatoes, nuts, tea, chocolate, black pepper and soy products.

3.Low salt diet and animal protein.
Reduce the amount of salt you eat and choose nonanimal protein sources, such as legumes.

4.Eat calcium-rich foods But use caution with calcium supplements. Calcium in food doesn’t have an effect on your risk of kidney stones.

5.Exercise
Adequate exercise(30mins brisk walk in a day for 5days in a week or 10,000 steps daily) is needed to keep healthy.

6.Routine annual medical checkup
This would help detect any abnormality in your system so that it can be tackled early.

At e-Clinic and Diagnostic Limited, we make all the Diagnostic needs for the treatment of Kidney Stone available all under one roof and our Turn around Time is excellent.
Visit us at #3 Agadez Street, by Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse 2, Abuja, FCT today
To book for an appointment and further details;
Call; +234701 000 2008, +2349087503497
Email; info@eclinic.ng

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