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Kidney Stone and Kidney Pain

Urinary system stone disease is a general term covering stones in the kidney, ureter (urinary tract), bladder and urethra (urinary tract), that is, in the urinary system. Urinary system stone disease is a very common health problem that causes serious problems if left untreated.

What are the causes of kidney stone formation?

Urinary system stones occur more frequently in hot and arid climates, they are related to genetic factors and nutrition; Our country is one of the countries where stone frequency is relatively high. Having a family history of stone disease increases the risk, it is more common in men.

What causes kidney stone pain?

Although stones in the renal collecting system occasionally cause pain, the main reason for the sudden onset of severe kidney pain, called renal colic, is the displacement of a stone in the kidney and falling into the ureter (urinary tract). In most patients, this event manifests itself with swelling of the kidney, stretching of the renal capsule, resulting severe pain, nausea and vomiting, which is defined by the term hydronephrosis.

What are the symptoms of kidney stone?

Side pain that does not change with body position and severity, darkening of the urine color or blood in the urine, recurrent urinary tract infections, burning sensation during urination, and sudden difficulty in urination may be symptoms of urinary system stones.

How are kidney stones treated?

Most kidney stones that were formerly treated with open surgery or percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) are performed under general anesthesia, today called retrograde intrarenal surgery (RIRS), using a thin instrument (flexible renoscope) with a light source, approximately 3mm in diameter, that provides images with a fiberoptic system. It is treated with the closed surgery method performed through the urinary canal. In this method, which is performed without making any incisions, it is passed through the urethra (urinary tract) and bladder (urinary bladder). Access is provided to the pathway (ureter), which provides the connection between the kidneys and the bladder, and by passing the ureter, the kidney is reached to break the stone that has settled in the kidney. The kidney stone is broken using a laser power source that can pass through the renoscope. After crushing, large stone pieces are taken out, powdered crumbs are poured from the kidney. In the meantime, if any mass or suspicious formation is found, biopsy can be taken and treatment can be performed in the same session with endoscopic scraping (resection). During this procedure, the surgeon can enter all the chambers of the kidney by controlling the tip of the instrument under direct vision and can break the stones with the help of laser.

With the development of new generation flexible (bendable) renoscopes and effective and safe stone breakers such as holmium laser, RIRS has become an important alternative in stone treatment. Today, most small and medium-sized kidney stones are successfully treated with RIRS without the need for open surgery or PCNL. In this way, the kidney can be reached without making a hole in the abdominal wall, and the stones can be completely broken up and cleaned with the renoscope and laser, which can be folded by entering through the urinary canal. This allows patients to be discharged from the hospital in a shorter time and return to their daily lives in a very short time.

By analyzing the stone fragments obtained after the surgery, the stone type is determined, in this way, some stones can be treated with some lifestyle suggestions and medical treatments, and some stones can be prevented from reoccurring.

Tips for preventing kidney stones

Stone disease affects 2-3% of people. In a person with a history of stone removal, the probability of stone recurrence is over 50% when appropriate treatments are not applied. The general lifestyle recommendations that prevent stone formation or recurrence can be listed as follows:

First of all, adequate and balanced fluid consumption: It is recommended to consume 2.5-3.0 liters of fluid daily, evenly distributed throughout the day, with non-acidic beverages. In this way, the daily urine volume is expected to be 2.0-2.5 liters; Non-condensed, light-colored urine output is an indication of adequate fluid intake. A balanced diet rich in vegetables and fiber and reducing animal proteins is recommended. Excessive salt consumption should be avoided. Weight control and regular exercise also reduce the risk of stone formation. No restriction is recommended for milk and dairy products.

In addition to these general recommendations, specific and detailed tests can be applied to people who drop stones frequently, and stone analysis to be made for patients who drop or have their stones removed by surgery, and individual/stone type-specific recommendations or drug treatments can be applied.