Do you see blood in your urine? Do you feel very severe pain in your abdomen, groin or sides? If your answer is yes, then see your doctor because you might have kidney stones. Kidney stones or sometimes called renal calculi are hard mineral and crystalline materials that are formed inside the kidney or the urinary tract. Research has shown that one in every twenty individuals develop kidney stone(s) at some stage in their lives.
Kidney stones can be treated in using different methods, some of these methods include:
1) Medical Treatment
If the patient feels severe pain (which means the stones are blocking the urinary tract or there is an infection), doctors usually suggest surgical or medical treatment. Medical treatment options are:
a) Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy (ESWL) – this method of treating kidney stones involves using “shock waves” which is known to pass through the body very easily but are quite strong enough to break up a kidney stone(s) in the process. ESWL is the most popular method for treating kidney stones.
b) Open surgery – in this treatment the patient goes under the surgeon’s knife. The surgeon removes the stone(s) by cutting the side or belly of the patient in order to reach the kidneys. This method of treating kidney stones is seldom used.
c) Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy or Nephrolithotripsy – this treatment is carried out if ESWL doesn’t work for the patient or if the kidney stone is too large. The surgeon places a narrow telescope into the patient’s kidney through an incision in the back of the patient. The surgeon then removes the stone (lithotomy) or breaks it up and then removes the broken up stones (lithotripsy).
d) Ureteroscopy – this procedure is quite invasive. This treatment involves the surgeon passing an “ureteroscope” (a very thin telescope tube) up the patient’s urinary tract to the location of the stone(s). As soon as the stone is located, the surgeon uses instruments to remove or break up the stones for easier removal. This medical treatment is commonly used if the stones have moved from the kidney to the urethra.
2) Home Remedies for Kidney Stones
Most kidney stones that are about 5mm to 10mm usually pass on their own because studies have shown that one or two out of every ten kidney stones need medical attention. It takes about one to three weeks in order for kidney stones to pass after using home remedies. Here are some home remedies that help you treat kidney stones:
a) Drink lots of water: Drinking lots of water will keep your urine clear, drink up to 8 to 10 glasses of water daily.
b) Nettle leaf: This leaf is known for its urination promotion abilities. Drinking up to 2 to 3 cups of nettle leaf tea daily may prevent the formation of kidney stones. Nettle leaf works by constantly keeping water flowing through the body’s kidneys and bladder; it also helps to wash away bacteria. Nettle leaf tea can be prepared by simply mixing 1 or 2 tablespoons of dried nettle leaf with a cup of hot water and leave to infuse for 10 to 15 minutes.
c) Vitamin supplements: Taking vitamin A and B6 supplement will definitely prevent the formation of kidney stones and treat kidney stones permanently; that is, if it is taken for a couple of months.
d) Pomegranates: Seeds of pomegranates (both sweet and sour) have proved effective in treating kidney stones. Pomegranate seeds are grounded into a fine paste and a tablespoon of the paste and can be used with horse gram soup in order to dissolve kidney stones. To prepare a cup of this soup, two tablespoons of horse gram should be used.