Statistics show that nearly 10% of the population will experience this health condition in one form or the other at some time. However, this ailment can be cured if diagnosed early.
Kidney Stones Signs
Some minor symptoms include dull pain in the rib area. Gradually the pain increases. There will be painful spasms from under the ribs and the hip bone. Eventually the sensation will move towards the inner thigh. The major indicator for women is pain in the vulva. For males ache is felt in the testicles.
In severe cases, there is blood in the urine. Urination is also painful. This will be accompanied by vomiting and nausea. If there is fever, the ureter has been blocked. What happens is that bacteria get stuck. It may cause pyelonephritis.
Kidney Stones Diagnosis
The first step is to assess the patient’s medical history. The ailment is common among males over 30. Having relatives who have suffered from this condition before also makes one more susceptible.
A complete description of all the symptoms is necessary to determine the actual cause. Some of the signs described may be caused by other ailments so a thorough assessment is needed.
X-rays are also conducted to check the state of the kidney. The surrounding areas like the bladder and ureter will be checked too.
Usually an iodine dye is injected into the vein prior to making an X-ray. This diagnostic procedure is called the intravenous pyelogram (IVP). This helps in detecting the presence of a stone. The urine will be tested thoroughly. The chemicals in the urine are evaluated for any signs of stones.
Kidney Stones Treatment
If the condition is severe, pain relievers are given. Antibiotics are usually prescribed in the event of an infection. If the patient is unable to take medication orally, it will be injected in the veins.
If the stones are large, surgery may be needed. An operation is also necessary if the stones are causing complications. This is also needed if bleeding is taking place.
There are numerous surgical procedures that can be used. One is to put in a tube in the bladder to try and take out the stone. Lithotripsy uses shock waves to destroy the stones. These stones are removed in the process.
There are also alternative treatments available to remove the pain. These include acupuncture and acupressure. These are not substitutes for the actual operation. Rather they can become supplementary pain removers.
Kidney Stones Prevention
The most efficient prevention method is to drink lots of water, at least eight glasses a day. Those with calcium stones may take diuretic, which filters out some of the calcium in the urine. It also helps if less meat is eaten. Salty foods should also be taken in moderate amounts.
Other foods that may cause stones to appear are beer, pepper and chocolate. A balanced diet will help in keeping the kidneys healthy. You may want to consult a doctor for the right diet and supplements.
The healthier a person is, the quicker the recovery will be. Keeping an eye on the major and minor symptoms also help in treating the disease quickly.