If the doctor suspects that you have kidney stones, he will perform tests that are intended to confirm his diagnosis. Among the tests you will be asked to do:
- blood tests
- Urine tests
- Imaging or ultrasound tests
With the help of these tests the doctor can see if there is an abundance of minerals in the urine, calcium or uric acid in the blood and visually identify kidney stones. Based on the information obtained in the tests, the doctor will be able to determine what causes the stones and build a treatment and prevention plan.
How is it treated?
The treatment of kidney stones varies depending on the type of stone and its causes.
Small stones with minimal symptoms
Most kidney stones will not require invasive treatment as long as they are small so that they can be excreted from the body through the urine. Small kidney stones can be treated with the following means:
- Drink plenty of water – Drinking a sufficient amount of fluids a day will keep the urine sparse and help produce a large amount of urine and prevent the formation of stones. Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, you should drink enough fluids, preferably water.
- Painkillers – There are small stones that can cause some discomfort, until the phenomenon passes by itself. To relieve pain, your doctor may recommend taking different types of painkillers.
- Medication – The doctor can also give you a prescription for a drug designed to treat and prevent kidney stones. This type of medication will help move kidney stones faster and with as little pain as possible.
Large stones with symptoms
Large stones do not tend to go away on their own and can cause bleeding, kidney damage or persistent urinary tract infections. Therefore they may require more comprehensive treatment. In this case, the options are:
- Using sound waves to break stones – This treatment is effective for kidney stones, depending on the size and location of the stones. The powerful sound waves break down the stones into smaller pieces so that they can be excreted from the body through the urine. This procedure lasts between 45 and 60 minutes and is sometimes performed under local anesthesia or anesthesia to prevent discomfort.
- Minimally invasive surgery – Another way to treat kidney stones is by minimally invasive surgery with no incisions or only with only a small incision. The doctor inserts a tube with a camera at the end, so that he can see the stones on a wide screen and can treat them successfully. This method has high success rates, short hospitalization and faster recovery.
Prevention of kidney stones
To prevent recurrence the formation of kidney stones is recommended to include a change in lifestyle. In some cases, the attending physician will even recommend taking medication.
- Drink plenty of water – Doctors recommend that people with a history of kidney stones drink enough fluids throughout the day.
- Reducing oxalate in the diet – If you produce calcium oxalate stones, your doctor may recommend limiting foods rich in oxalate such as beets, okra, spinach, chocolate and more.
- Diet poor in salts and animal protein – Here the recommendation is to reduce the amount of salts you consume and consume less animal protein and more plant.
Medications and supplements
Medications can control the amount of minerals and salts in the urine and they may benefit people who form a certain type of stones. Depending on the type of stones you produce, the attending physician will prescribe you the appropriate drug treatment for your condition.
Studies show that taking post citrate may help reduce the risk of new kidney stones by 93%. When persistent, treatment can also prevent pain, hospitalizations and surgeries in more severe cases. Post citrate binds to calcium in urine dissolves it and helps it to be excreted from the body through the urine. It is effective for calcium stones, which are the most common type of kidney stones, as well as for uric acid stones.
* The attending physician should be consulted before use.