Kidney stones are not usually a serious medical condition, but they can be incredibly painful. Men and women who live in or around Spokane, Washington, have access to a team of skilled urology specialists at Spokane Urology. Having a trusted team to turn to can make the experience of kidney stones far easier to bear. If you or a loved one needs care for kidney stones, call the office today to set up a visit, or you can schedule an appointment online.
Kidney stones are hard deposits of minerals and salts that develop inside your kidneys. They are usually very small in the beginning stages, but they can grow larger over time. These stones sometimes remain in your kidney and cause no symptoms, but they can also travel through your ureter and into the bladder, where they eventually pass through your urine.
When a kidney stone becomes stuck in your ureter, it can stop the flow of urine and create a significant amount of pain. Even a slight movement from one area of your kidney to another can cause pain.
In the early stages, most kidney stones don’t cause symptoms. If your stone begins to change position, you may notice a combination of the following symptoms:
Don’t ignore these signs of concern. Some treatments can help you pass kidney stones.
Your treatment depends on the size and type of kidney stones you’re dealing with. Small stones can sometimes be addressed by drinking more water to help flush the stones from your system. Over-the-counter pain medications can address your discomfort, and prescription medications can help relax the muscle tissue in your ureter to help the stones pass with less pain.
Larger stones can be broken apart using sound waves, leaving behind smaller stone fragments that are easier to pass. Extremely large kidney stones might need to be removed via minimally invasive surgery. There are several options for completing this procedure.
Once you’ve experienced a painful kidney stone, you’ll want to take steps to prevent new stones from developing. One of the most powerful ways to reduce your risk is to drink plenty of water each day. When salt and minerals build up in concentrated urine, they can stick together and form stones.
Your specialist might recommend avoiding certain oxalate-rich foods like soy, tea, chocolate, and sweet potatoes. You should also reduce your intake of salt and animal protein and increase the consumption of calcium-rich foods.
Medications can prevent certain kinds of stones. Long-term antibiotics, drugs to control uric acid levels, and drugs that increase urine production are all possibilities.
Learn more during a one-on-one consultation with Spokane Urology. Call the office to schedule an appointment, or you can book an appointment online at any time.