Steinberg Urology: All About Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are small deposits or hard crystals forming inside your kidneys when minerals and salts in your urine bond together. Some kidney stones cause little or no symptoms, while others may pass through the urinary system that causes painful symptoms. The urologists at Steinberg Urology are experienced in the treatment of stones affecting both men and women, providing specialized diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up care, focusing on long-term health.
Are you at high risk of developing kidney stones? The possible causes and risk factors of kidney stones include certain diets (high in protein, oxalates, and stones like chocolates, nuts, and spinach), excess vitamin C or vitamin D intake, inflammatory conditions (chronic diarrhea, Crohn’s disease, and inflammatory bowel disease), family history of stone diseases, metabolic disorders (gout or hyperthyroidism), and obesity. The signs and symptoms of kidney stones include severe pain (located in the side or the back, radiating to the abdomen and the groin area), painful urination, frequent need to urinate, urinary urge, blood in the urine (hematuria), foul smelling urine, nausea and vomiting, and fever (stone causing infection). The common diagnostic tools for kidney stones include CT scan, ultrasound, x-ray, urinalysis, and blood work to determine excessive uric acid or calcium. Small kidney stones can pass through the urinary tact with the help of pain relievers (acetaminophen), alpha blockers (to relax ureters to allow passing of stones with lesser pain), and increased fluid intake (to flush stones). You may be asked by your urologist to use a special strainer to catch the kidney stones or fragments to determine what type of stones you have to help in the management of your kidney stones that may form in the future.
When it comes to the kidney stones, there are different types such as calcium-oxalate, struvite stones, uric acid stones, and cystine stones. The most common type of kidney stones are calcium-oxalate caused by oxalate-rich foods such as spinach, kale, chocolate, strawberries, nuts, and tea, high in salt food, and certain medications. Struvite stones grow very large, causing infection, and it affects both men and women. Uric acid is a waste product of the body found in the urine and uric acid stones may form because of excessive intake of animal protein like red meat. Shock wave lithotripsy refers to a non-invasive procedure for removing smaller stones (less than 10mm in diameter). Allow us to help you find an expert and experienced urologist through Steinberg Urology today.