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Kidney Stones 101

September 14, 2020

Kidney stones. If you’ve dealt with them at least once in your life, or know someone who has, you can fully understand how painful and inconvenient they can be. Although they can often start off small, it’s not uncommon for them to grow over time and become quite problematic. While some stones remain in your kidneys and never cause issues, others will travel down and cause intense pain.

Did you know that there are four different types of kidney stones? Each stone depends on the type of deficiency your body is facing. These types can include calcium, uric acid, cystine, and struvite. Each of these types has different causes, ranging from diet to diabetes, UTIs, and/or calcium levels. Several risk factors can increase your likelihood of developing kidney stones. These can include family or personal history, specific medical conditions, supplements and medications, obesity, particular diets (that are high in sodium, protein, and sugar), dehydration, surgery, and digestive diseases. If you or your loved ones have any of these risk factors, it’s crucial to be aware.

When someone has a kidney stone, there are several symptoms they might face. Some of these might include: discolored urine (pink, brown, or red), cloudy or foul-smelling urine, nausea and vomiting, fever and chills, a constant need to urinate, severe and sharp pain below the ribs and in the side and back, pain in the lower abdomen and groin, burning sensation or pain when urinating, and pain that fluctuates in intensity. Although these symptoms are common for most people, you should certainly call your doctor if you experience more dire symptoms, such as: blood in your urine, inability to sit down, pain associated with nausea, vomiting, chills, and fever, and difficulty urinating.

Depending on your situation, our doctors at Athens Area Urology may suggest observation and medication to help pass your kidney stone. However, with more severe cases, intervention may be necessary. Regardless, AAU will help select the best treatment plan possible, specialized to your specific needs. To schedule an appointment, give us a call at 706.612.9401 or visit our website.

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