The kidneys are bean-shaped fist-sized organs located under the ribs in the middle of the back the kidneys filter waste materials and excess fluid from…

Try: The kidneys are bean-shaped fist-sized organs located under the ribs in the middle of the back the kidneys filter waste materials and excess fluid from the blood and also produce hormones that are important for blood formation blood pressure and bone formation kidney stones also called renal calculi occur when substances within the urine form solid material kidney stones can vary in size from a grain of sand to bigger than a golf ball they can be smooth or they can have jagged edges there may be a single stone or many stones kidney stones can cause severe pain small kidney stones can cause pain as they pass through the urinary tract large stones can become stuck in the kidney ureter or bladder causing pain and blockage of urine flow this can lead to infection and kidney damage causes the build up of the substances that form kidney stones may be caused by urinary tract infections dehydration certain medical conditions and metabolic imbalances however in most cases the cause is unknown risk factors family history of kidney stones poor fluid intake or dehydration structural problems that cause pooling of urine and infection in the kidney having had previous kidney stones signs and symptoms the most common symptom of kidney stones is intense pain in the area of the back between the bottom of the ribs and the hip bone the pain can radiate down to the groin area the pain is referred to as renal colic and can last for several hours renal colic is caused by the ureter trying to move the stone towards the bladder though a wave-like motion peristalsis other symptoms include nausea and vomiting blood in the urine – caused by damage to the lining of the ureter or the presence of infection fever or chills repeated urinary infections prevention once there has been a kidney stone there is an increased likelihood of recurrence it is estimated that 30 – 50 of people will develop another kidney stone within five years of developing the first kidney stone steps that can be taken to prevent the development or recurrence of kidney stones include drinking plenty of fluid – up to 2 litres per day is recommended adequately treating underlying medical conditions avoiding food with a high salt content eating meat in moderation information references carson-de witt r 2006 kidney stones the gale encyclopaedia of medicine in health and wellness resource centre thompson gale farmington mills mi davidson a m cumming a d swainson c p & turner n 1999 diseases of the kidney and urinary system in c r w edwards i a d bouchier c haslett & e r chilvers eds davidson’s principles and practice of medicine 18th ed pp 417-470 edinburgh churchill livingstone new zealand kidney foundation 2003 kidney stones pamphlet new zealand kidney foundation christchurch

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Keywords: Kidneys dehydrated back pain blood in urine

*This information is listed as a Fact Sheet and is not explicitly medically licensed

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