Saturday, July 25, 2009

Kidney Stone FAQs

  1. How are kidney stones formed?

    Kidney stones are formed due to the accumulation of Calcium Oxalate or other chemicals present in the urine. Over a period of time they solidify into a huge mass forming stones resulting in obstruction of the ureter. Apart from the more common oxalate stones, phosphate and urate stones are also prevalent.

  2. What are the causes of the condition?

    Inadequate fluid intake is the major reason for stone formation. Other causes include underlying metabolic disorders, urinary tract infections, intake of certain drugs, dietary reasons, etc. Kidney stones are more common among men than women.

  3. How are kidney stones diagnosed?

    Special X-ray techniques, computed tomography and ultrasound imaging can indicate the presence of kidney stones.

  4. What are the symptoms associated with kidney stones?

    Severe colicky pain in the lower abdomen region from loin to groin, nausea/vomiting, blood in the urine, fever and foul-smelling urine are the usual symptoms.

  5. How are kidney stones treated?

    High liquid intake, diet control and medication are capable of dissolving and banishing stones. Acute cases are treated by a surgical procedure to pull out the stones. Invasive techniques include laser, ultrasonic or shockwave procedures. A non-invasive method called ESWL is a new technique that is getting popular.

  6. What precautions one can take to avert the risk of stone formation?

    Drinking gallons of water is the best strategy against kidney stone formation. Reducing the amount of salt in meal is important. Calcium producing vegetables like tomatoes, chikoo, cashew nuts, etc and oxalate rich foods like chocolates, beans, peanuts, etc can be limited in consumption.


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