What is a kidney stone?
A kidney stone refers to mineralized stone that is formed inside the kidney or other nearby structures like the urinary tract. This stone is formed from the minerals or crystal build-up in the kidneys after it separates from the urine that is excreted. Over time, this build-up of minerals will form into stones which can become too large for it to pass through the urinary tract. Some are very tiny that they can be excreted along with the urine. Otherwise, the large kidney stones may cause pain in the kidney and urinary tract area because of obstruction or possible tears in the linings of the kidney or urinary tract.
Many people refer to kidney stones as calcium stones. This is because calcium is the most common mineral in kidney stones. When calcium components build up in the urine, they eventually become crystallized and accumulate to become stones. This is also the reason why some people refer to kidney stones as calcifications or calcified stones because of the presence of calcium. Aside from calcium, other components also become part of kidney stones like oxalate and phosphate for example.
The exact reason for kidney stone formation is still unclear. Studies have shown though that certain food items may predispose people into developing kidney stones. Family history is also a contributing factor in the incidence of this medical illness. Most people experience pain in urination or blood in their urine when they have kidney stones. The pain is basically brought about by the obstruction caused by the stone to the urinary tract. It may also indicate possible infection in the involved part of the kidney or urinary tract. Blood in the urine means that the inner lining of the urinary tract may already have tears caused by the stones. People also often complain of pain in the lower back or groin areas while others feel dizzy or nauseated. If any of these symptoms appear, immediate medical attention is advised to avoid complications and worsening of the symptoms.