Kidney Stone Pictures and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Below are numerous questions that are frequently asked about kidney stones. The information has been divided into three articles – one focused on the types and symptoms of kidney stones with accompanying kidney stone pictures; the next on the causes of kidney stones; and the third on available treatments and descriptions of surgical procedures.
What is a kidney stone?
Kidney stones are hardened mineral deposits that form in the kidneys. They begin as minute particles that bond together into crystal formations that eventually develop into stones. A kidney stone can be the size of a sand grain or they can reach golf ball proportions. A person can have one or they can develop a number of kidney stones.
Kidney stone pictures showing stone removal procedure.
Are there different types of kidney stones? If so, what are they?
Calcium kidney stones tend to be the most common followed by cystine, struvite, and uric acid kidney stones. Each type of stone has a specific origin or cause that must be treated individually. To view these types of stones, click here to see some kidney stone pictures.
How do I know if I have a kidney stone?
You may have a kidney stone for a month or a year before you begin to wonder what is going on. At some point, the stone grows large enough to signal that something is not quite right. The pain may start as a dull ache on your back and side areas. As the body tries to expel the stone, the result is a constant, severe pain. Another sign may be a burning sensation when urinating, the appearance of blood in the urine, and an increase in the frequency and urgency to urinate. Other signals to watch for are nausea, vomiting, and contact pain at the lower abdominal area.
Why are kidney stones so painful?
Many women have actually stated that the pain from kidney stones is worse than that experienced during childbirth. Kidney stones tend to form within a kidney’s soft tissue and then move through the kidneys and urinary system as it grows larger. The movement causes pain and bleeding. The medical term for the effects caused by a kidney stone is referred to as nephrolithiasis and is more commonly known as renal stone disease.
What generally causes kidney stones to form?
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Information Pages on Stones of the Kidneys: