The kidneys, two organs in the shape of a bean forms a part of our urinary system and its principal function it to filter all the waste from our blood, whilst urine is created.
What Does A Kidney Stone Look Like and What are They
Minerals and salts which are present in our urine occasionally cling together in some people and then develop into small kidney stones. Such stones can vary from as tiny as a crystal of sugar up to the size of a golf ball. In cases where these kidney stones don’t form an obstruction, it can go unnoticed. They take on the appearance of crystalline lumps or pebbles. However when these stones are pushed into the narrow tubes called the ureters, which are connected with our bladder, severe pain can be caused.
Kidney Stones: What causes them?
An individual can develop kidney stones when there is an imbalance between the minerals, salts and water and other substances present in our urine. The inadequate consumption of water is one of the man reasons for the forming of kidney stones. Therefore, everyone should drink an ample amount of water to keep the colour or your urine either as clear as water or a light yellow. Eight up to ten glasses on a daily basis is recommended. However, it is also true that certain people suffering from a medical disorder, like gout, will be more prone to develop kidney stones.
Other factors which can attribute to developing kidney stones include:
Certain individuals are more vulnerable to develop stones due to heredity. The tendency of having high calcium levels in your urine may be inherited from the one generation to the other, as the most kidney stones are formed of calcium a condition termed hypercalciuria.
Other uncommon hereditary disorders which can play a key role include: individuals who have trouble with the metabolism process of various chemicals which can include an amino acid called cystine, in gout-sufferers (uric acid) and an organic salt (oxalate) and those suffering from renal tubular-acidosis.
The possibility exists that your diet can be or is not a factor. Individuals with the proneness to develop kidney stones should avoid a diet rich in proteins from animal sources and it is advisable to follow a diet with low levels of salt or use a substitute. In other individuals who don’t have the tendency of forming kidney stones, it is possible that their eating-regime won’t have the same affect.
- Geographic location:
The region where you live may also have an impact on your risk to form kidney stones. In the southern regions of the United States people are more prone to develop kidney stones than in other states. This susceptibility may be linked to the hot climatic conditions. In cases where individuals don’t drink enough fluids, whilst living in such hot conditions, they can be more prone to become dehydrated. With dehydration their urine can become more condensed and thus chemicals can form some closer contact which can be the start of forming a kidney stone.
- Underlying diseases:
Certain chronic disorders are also linked to the development of kidney stones, which include: inflammatory bowel-disease, renal tubular acidosis and cystic fibrosis.
Individuals using water pills (diuretics) and with a consumption of excessive antacids which contains calcium, may raise the quantity of calcium present in their urine which will most likely elevate their risk to develop kidney stones. HIV-positive patients using Crixivan (indinavir) may be susceptible developing indinavir kidney stones. An excessive intake of high levels of Vitamins D and A, may also be linked to risen calcium levels in the urine. The following medicines, generally prescribed, are also linked to a proneness to develop stones:
- Antibiotic drugs such as you can say ciprofloxacin (Cipro) & ceftriaxone (Rocephin).
- Phenytoin – Dilantin
What do Kidney Stones Look Like
See The Symptoms
As kidney stones pass through our urinary system, it can cause:
- Hematuria (blood visible in your urine)
- Extreme pain in the region of the belly, groin or back
- Painful as well as more frequent urination
- The occurrence of vomiting and feeling nauseous
However, it is possible with the passing of small kidney stones, there can be no symptoms.
Kidney Stones: The Diagnosis
Usually kidney stones are only diagnosed when they start to cause terrible pain. In general this severe pain forces the patients to visit the ER.
Various kinds of testing can reveal the stones. Such tests may include: X-rays; CT-scan; urinalysis or ultrasound. However, blood tests may also be conducted which can show whether high mineral-levels are elaborating in the developing of kidney stones.
The Severe Pain: Something Else or Kidney Stones?
In the occurrence of an onset of extreme pain in the region of your belly or back, consult your healthcare professional immediately. Pain in the abdomen is linked to various other disorders which include an ectopic pregnancy or appendicitis.
When you are experiencing pain during urination, it can point to an STD (sexually transmitted disease) or a UTI (urinary tract infection).
Controllable Risk Factors
As we had already mentioned, an inadequate consumption of water is the greatest cause for the development of stones. The same goes for where your diet is concerned. It is advisable not to follow and eating plan which include too much protein. Foods which are rich in oxalate for example the dark greenish type of vegetables and chocolate can also raise the risk in certain individuals to form kidney stones. Too much sodium (salt) must also be avoided and using a substitute can be a great option. Gaining weight and using particular medications can also be risk factors.
Uncontrollable Risk Factors
White men in their 40’s and older have a higher risk to develop kidney stones compared to other groups. Women in their 50’s have an elevated risk. Hereditary factors can also raise your risk. Particular medical disorders can also heighten your risk. Such conditions include gout, hypertension (high blood pressure) and infections of the urinary tract (UTI’s). However if above-mentioned disorders are treated it will help to prevent the development of kidney stones.
Troops Deployed in Desert-regions have a Higher Risk
Troops who are doing military service in desert-regions like Iraq are highly prone to develop kidney stones. According to doctors, the main cause is dehydration. This happens due to the hot and dry climatic conditions, combined with consuming too little water and their protective clothing. These cause high quantities of mineral deposits in the urine with the tendency to stick together which can develop into kidney stones.
Kidney Stones: The Calcium Dispute
The majority of kidney stones comprise of calcium. However, it is not necessary to avoid foods which are rich in calcium. Including sensible quantities of foods rich in calcium as well as dairy products in your diet, may even lessen your risk to developing new kidney stones. However, this is not applicable to the supplementing of calcium, which was associated with kidney stones forming in certain individuals. It is advisable to consult your dietician or doctor about your consumption of calcium.
What about Home Care regarding your Kidney Stones?
Your healthcare professional may suggest that you use medication for the pain and wait until the stone passes through by itself. During this period, your medical professional may also suggest that you consume ample fluids and water, attempting to keep your urine clear. It is recommended that 8-10 glasses must be taken on a daily basis.
Kidney Stones: The Treatment
Different options for treating kidney stones are available.
Medication can be prescribed by your doctor, which can assist your body in passing your kidney stones. Alpha-blockers, a type of drug will relax the ureters’ inside-walls. The narrow tubes will widen and thus the kidney stones can pass through easier. Usually side-effects are moderate and include dizziness or headaches. Other available kinds of medicine can assist with the prevention of developing new kidney stones.
An ureteroscopy will be the treatment if a kidney stone passed from the kidney and is located near your bladder. During this procedure a thin tube will be positioned through your urinary tract to where the kidney stone is located. A surgical physician will break up the kidney stone and fragments will be removed via the thin tube. However, no incisions in the body will be necessary. Very large kidney stones may be removed via a surgical process.
- ESWL: Shock Wave Lithotripsy
ESWL (extracorporeal chock-wave lithotripsy) is generally the most used medical process to treat the majority of kidney stones. ESWL-therapy uses shock waves with a high level of energy. These shock waves break down the stones converting it into tiny pieces. These tiny pieces can pass easily through your urinary tract. Bruising, pain and bleeding are side effects experienced.
- Analysis of Kidney Stones
After the passing of a kidney stone, your healthcare professional may wish to determine its substance. Calcium-based kidney stones forms approximately 80 percent of all stones. The rest principally consist of cystine, struvite or uric acid. Conducting a chemical analysis of the stone can establish which kind of kidney stone it is. This information can help you to take action in the prevention of developing new stones again.
- Kidney Stones: The Prognosis
When an individual once experienced the passing of a kidney stone, a probability exists that another kidney stone will occur in their lifetime. Due to the hereditary of kidney stones, it has a greater chance that the upcoming generation will inherit it too.
Nowadays, renal disease is on the rise on a worldwide scale! These two important organs in our Urinary System are of utmost importance to live a healthy and pain-free life.
How Does a Kidney Look Like?
The two kidneys which are the waste-cleaners of our bodies have the shape of a bean. They ore located higher up in the cavity of our abdomens, residing against the muscles of our backs. They are situated on each side of our spines, facing each other. On images it can be noticed that our right kidney is located somewhat lower than the one on the left. This is for the accommodation of our livers.
Vitamin-supplementing may Provide Bladder & Kidney Health
Are you experiencing any or these under-mentioned problems?
- Repetitive inflammation of your urinary tract
- Paying several visits to your bathroom during the night
- Any difficulty when you are urinating
- Feeling a consistent need emptying the bladder
- After urinating feels there is some urine left in the bladder
Do any of the above-mentioned problems bother you? Herbal and vitamin supplements can render some health support to your kidney- and bladder health. These supplements can provide some relieve of urinary tract inflammation. This also poses as a natural remedy!
Many problems can be the cause to be unable to empty your bladder completely. However, if you experience problems, consult your doctor because it can be due to a kidney disorder or even to an injury.
It is important to visit your medical professional if you are undergoing kidney dialysis or experience some type of dysfunction. This need to be done before a person starts taking herbal- or vitamin supplements.
Aging can also cause urine-flow disorders. As one gets older, your kidneys’ waste-removal function also decreases. The bladder-, ureters- and urethra muscles lose some strength which causes incapacity to empty your bladder completely. This causes chronic inflammation of the urinary tract.