The kidney is an organ the filters the blood; it is responsible for taking away waste products from the body and it produces urine. The kidney also regulates the levels of electrolytes that are vital for proper body functioning. The kidney drains urine through a narrow tube known as the ureter and this goes into the bladder. When the bladder is filled and there is no urge to urinate, the bladder automatically empties itself through the urethra; a much bigger tube than the ureter.
In some cases, there are chemical crystals formed in the urine; this will turn into nidus or a kidney stone. Kidney stones are very tiny; much smaller than a grain of sand, when they start to form, but they do grow steadily over time.
The presence of stones in the urinary tract is known as Urolithiasis, while the presence of kidney stones is referred to as nephrolithiasis and the presence of stones blocking the ureter is called ureterolithiasis. These stones are responsible for blocking the passage of urine and their sizes do not really matter as much as their location.
A stone formation in the kidney is not really a problem as long as it does not fall into the ureter. Once it does, it will act as a dam that will block the urine. As the kidney continues to produce urine, the pressure will build up behind the stone causing the kidney to swell. Pain from the kidney stone will be experienced because of this pressure that can also push the stone to the ureter.
Kidney Stones Symptoms:
Kidney stone symptoms are similar for both adults and children. But these symptoms of kidney stones are hard to determine and appreciate in younger children and infants.
Initial kidney stones symptoms in infants are inconsolable crying and colic-like symptoms, and these can be attributed to any common illness.
Unbearable pain that can be compared to the pangs of giving birth is one of the most common symptoms of kidney stones.
There could be stabbing pains to the knees when having a major kidney stone attack. This is one kidney stone symptoms that usually drives people to seek immediate medical attention.
Other kidney stones symptoms may include a dull and nondescript lower back pain or a crippling and extreme sharp pain in the back. Though these pains can only last for a few days and may subside, they should not be ignored, because they are the actual signs of problems not only in the kidneys but possibly in other organs too.
The levels of pain do vary; they may be continuous, or they may come and go in waves, but they rarely disappear completely. Even if the pain seems tolerable, it should not be left unchecked.