Stone Disease

Urolithiasis is a disease, when in kidneys and other urinary organs form stones. People of all ages may have it.

The mechanism of the disease is, when metabolism is disordered, insoluble salts are collected different in amount and size. The composition of the stones may be different too. Stones may occur in all parts of urinary system – kidneys, bladder or ureters.

The disease is dangerous since urine out-flowing may be blocked. Bladder stones may result in acute cystitis. A kidney may be removed if not treated in time. Ureteral and kidney stones may result in chronic pyelonephritis.

Causing Factors for Stone Disease

  • History of family (the risk dramatically increases)
  • Urinary tract and kidney diseases (cystitis, pyelonephritis, prostatitis, benign prostatic hyperplasia)
  • Hot climate and excessive sweating make urine concentrate
  • Hard water – excessive amount of calcium salts in the water promotes their concentration in the body
  • Sour and spicy food. It raises acidity of urine which promotes stone formation;
  • Lack of vitamins;
  • Bone diseases (osteoporosis, osteomyelitis)
  • Chronic gastrointestinal conditions (colitis, gastritis, ulcer)

Signs and Symptoms of Stone Disease

Symptoms of Kidney Stones

  • Dull and acute ache in the lower back (frequently in one side)
  • Pain when moving
  • Blood in urine (after physical exercise or painful spasms)
  • Stones come out with urine (after painful spasms)

Symptoms of Bladder Stones

  • Pain in the lower abdomen (may spread to sexual organs and perineum) – occurs during urination and movement
  • Frequent urination
  • Interrupted urine flow (stream stops while a person feels like the bladder is not completely emptied; a stream occurs when a person moves)
  • With severe stone disease one can urinate only in lying position

Symptoms of Ureteral Stones

  • Pain in groin, genitals, and lower abdomen
  • Frequent urges to urination (when a stone in lower ureter)
  • Kidney colic (when a stone blocks ureter, urine is collected in kidney). Sharp pain in lower back and abdomen correspondingly that will occur several hours or days apart

Diagnostic Procedures

  • General urine test
  • Ultrasound
  • X-ray
  • Cystoscopy

Methods of Treatment for Stone Disease

Conservative treatment is chosen when stone is not big and no complications are present.

Measures:

  • Medicines. Medicines can dissolve stones
  • Diet. Depends on stone kinds. For instance, if stones have oxalate composition, salad, spinach, milk and potato should be excluded. With phosphate stones, fruit and vegetables and milk should be excluded while oils, lard and meat are acceptable. Urates exclude liver, kidneys from your meal
  • To relief colicky pain you can take warm bath or put a hot-water bottle and take a pain reliever

Operative approach is used when pains are unbearable both in work and at home and when pyelonephritis repeats.

There are instrumental and operative approaches in stone removal.

  • Stones can be broken up with cystoscope. If the procedure gives no result, the bladder is treated with surgery
  • Ureteral stones are usually pulled to bladder and removed with endoscopy (without cutting)
  • Big stones can only be treated with surgery
  • Stones can be broken up with electromagnetic waves. This is more comfortable method then others. However, it does not always help

Metabolic dysfunction causes the disease. You can keep healthy if remember whether any of your relatives has had stone diseases.

  • Exclude broths, spicy and fried foods, coffee, cacao and chocolate from your daily meal
  • Limit your consumption of table salt and fried foods
  • Do not eat too much
  • Drink water, not less then 1.5l of water per day
  • Drink special herbal teas
  • Do not expose yourself to cold air and water for a long time
  • See a Urologist once you’ve felt any pain in lower back even if it is mild