The function of kidneys in your body is to remove waste and fluid from your blood to make urine. At times, when there is too much of certain wastes but less fluid in your blood, these wastes can build up and stick together in your kidneys. These clumps are called kidney stones.
Kidney stones can be larger than a pearl or as small as a grain of sand.
A very small kidney stone can move through your urinary tract and has no symptoms. When the stone moves around within your kidney, or when it moves into your ureter, symptoms will appear. The flow of urine may be blocked, if it gets stuck in the ureter. The kidney will swell and the ureter will spasm, which is a painful condition.
In that case, following signs and symptoms are observed:
Sharp and severe pain in the side and back, below the ribs.
Pain spreading to the lower abdomen and groin
Pain starting in waves and fluctuating in intensity
Pain or burning sensation while urinating.
Other signs and symptoms
Pink, brown or red urine
Cloudy or foul-smelling urine
Pain accompanied by fever and chills
Blood in your urine
Difficulty in passing urine
Nausea and vomiting
Fever and chills
Kidney stones are formed when your urine contains more crystal-forming substances such as Calcium, Oxalate and Uric Acid -than the fluid in your urine can dilute. If your urine lacks substances that can prevent the crystals from sticking together, kidney stones are formed.
Types of Kidney Stones
It is essential to know the type of kidney stone you have so that its cause can be determined and also to know how to reduce your risk of getting more kidney stones. It would be advisable to save your kidney stone if you pass one so that you can take it to your doctor for analysis.
Following are the types of kidney stones:
These are the most common type, usually found in the form of Calcium oxalate and sometimes in the form of Calcium phosphate. Calcium oxalate can be absorbed from your diet like certain fruits and vegetables, nuts and chocolate.
Factors that can cause an increase in the concentration of calcium or oxalate in urine are dietary factors, high doses of Vitamin D, intestinal bypass surgery and several metabolism disorders.
Calcium phosphate is more common in metabolic conditions, such as renal tubular acidosis. Certain medications used to treat migraines or seizures, such as topiramate can also cause its formation.
Struvite stones are formed in response to a urinary tract infection. Bacteria make Ammonia that builds in your urine. These stones can grow quickly, into large sizes, sometimes with few symptoms or little warning. These are composed of Magnesium, Ammonium and Phosphate.
Uric Acid Stones
Stones can be formed by Uric acid itself or with Calcium. These form when your urine is often too acidic. When too much fluid is lost because of chronic diarrhea or malabsorption, these stones develop. Those who eat a high protein diet, and those with diabetes or metabolic syndrome also develop uric acid stones. Your risk of uric acid stones may be increased by certain genetic factors.
These stones are made of cystine, a chemical made by your body naturally. They are very rare and found in people with a hereditary disorder called cystinuria, that causes cystine to leak from the kidney into urine.
Your risk of developing kidney stones are increased by the following factors:
Family or Personal History
Dehydration - People who sweat a lot, and live in warm, dry climates are at greater risk.
Certain Diets - Diets that are high in protein, sodium (salt) and sugar may increase your risk of some types of kidney stones. When salt content is more in the diet, the amount of calcium your kidneys must filter increases. So, there is a significant risk involved.
Obesity - The occurrence of kidney stones is more when there is high body mass index (BMI), waist size and weight gain.
Digestive diseases and surgery - Inflammatory bowel disease, chronic diarrhea, gastric bypass surgery or another intestinal surgery can cause changes in the digestive process that affect your absorption of Calcium and water. This way, stone-forming substances increase in urine.
Other medical conditions - Hyperparathyroidism, Renal Tubular Acidosis, Cystinuria, and repeated Urinary Tract infections, Polycystic kidney disease can also increase your risk of kidney stones.
Certain supplements and medications -
Dietary supplements, excessive use of laxatives, Vitamin C, Calcium-based antacids and certain medications used to treat migraines or depression can increase your risk of kidney stones.
Ayurvedic Treatment of Kidney Stones
Ayurveda describes kidney stones as Ashmari.
According to Ayurveda, following are the causes of Ashmari:
Non-adoption of Panchakarma
Unhealthy diet and lifestyle
Heredity, geographical condition and dietetic factors
Metabolic instability, bladder infections and hormonal influences
Panchakarma is a detox process that eliminates the accumulated toxins and restores the body's innate healing ability. The customized package consists of a series of massages, steam therapy, purgation, enemas to bladder and bowel etc in accordance to your doshic levels. Panchakarma should be done every year to prevent the development of kidney stones.
Ayurvedic Herbs and Medicines
A number of diuretic herbs are beneficial to break the kidney stones so that they can be easily expelled in the urine.
Ayurvedic herbs and remedies also avoid the chances of recurrence of kidney stones.
The important treatments in Ayurveda include Mutravirechaniya (diuretic), Ashmarighna dravya (lithotriptic), and Kshara karma (alkali therapy).
Healthy diet and lifestyle changes are also to be followed for better results.
Treatment at Jeevess
At Jeevess, a customized Panchakarma package will be planned by your doctor after considering your body constitution. Several herbal formulations are prepared at Jeevess, which are highly effective in breaking the stones. Yoga Asanas are also practiced to bring about the desired changes.
Come to Jeevess, be cured of your ailment and restore a healthy living.