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Urolithiasis – Causes and Remedies

Urolithiasis, a common disorder within the urinary system, demonstrates an escalating incidence. This article aims to elucidate the reasons behind urolithiasis development and propose solutions to address this condition.

1. General Understanding of Urolithiasis

1.1 Definition

The urinary system comprises the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. Urolithiasis occurs when urine becomes concentrated, with high mineral concentrations leading to the formation of solid crystals that aggregate into stones.

Urolithiasis includes kidney stones, ureteral stones, bladder stones, and urethral stones. They vary in size (2mm to over 20mm), quantity, composition (calcium, struvite, cystine, uric acid), and structure (smooth or complex). Each patient’s urolithiasis condition is unique, necessitating personalized medical consultation for successful treatment.

General Understanding of Urolithiasis

Urinary tract

1.2 Symptoms of Urolithiasis

Typical signs of urolithiasis include:

– Lower back or flank pain

– Difficulty and frequent urination with interruptions

– Painful or obstructed urination

– Dark yellow urine with occasional blood

– Penile tenderness.

However, in the initial stages or when stones are small, symptoms may not be apparent, and patients might discover the condition during routine check-ups or examinations for other ailments.

Kidney Stone Symptoms

Severe, sharp pain in the side and back, below the ribs

2. Main Causes of Urolithiasis

2.1 Objective Causes – Chronic Diseases

Several chronic conditions impacting the urinary system can contribute to stone formation. These include:

– Peptic ulcers and intestinal issues increase oxalate levels, leading to oxalate-calcium stone formation.

– Urinary tract infections promote the conversion of urea to ammonia, facilitating stone formation.

– Congenital anomalies or genetic predispositions such as porous kidney medulla or renal cysts hinder urine excretion.

– Diabetes, with its acidic nature fostering mineral crystallization.

2.2 Subjective Causes – Dietary Habits

Unhealthy dietary choices significantly influence urolithiasis formation. Patients are advised to:

– Maintain adequate daily water intake (2-3 liters).

– Opt for a balanced diet with controlled oxalate and calcium levels.

– Limit salt intake, preferring bland and wholesome foods.

– Avoid excessive animal protein consumption.

Inappropriate Lifestyle Choices:

– Lack of physical activity and prolonged sedentary behavior diminish calcium absorption, increasing urine calcium concentration.

– Prolonged urine retention and infrequent voiding contribute to urine stagnation, creating favorable conditions for stone development.

– Late-night activities, alcohol, concentrated beverages, and caffeine consumption over extended periods can exacerbate the risk.

Prolonged Medication Usage:

Certain medications, including antibiotics, diuretics, pain relievers, and specific vitamins, may affect urine calcium levels, posing a risk for stone formation.

3. Effective Contemporary Treatments for Urolithiasis

Three primary treatment approaches are widely utilized:

– Internal medical treatment: Suitable for small stones with uncomplicated positions. Prescribed medications are tailored to the patient’s condition.

– Surgical stone extraction: Employed for larger, complex stones causing urinary flow obstruction. This traditional method is considered a cornerstone treatment.

– Minimally invasive surgery: These modern techniques minimize invasive procedures and complications. Four methods include extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL), percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL), cystoscopy and ureteroscopy.

Effective Contemporary Treatments for Urolithiasis

Rigid ureteroscopy is indicated in the treatment of ureteral stones

Patients seeking optimal treatment should promptly consult healthcare professionals for thorough examination and personalized intervention.

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