EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – One in ten people will get kidney stones at least once in their lifetime according to the National Kidney Foundation, but living in hotter and drier climate might make you more susceptible.
Dr. Olufemi Aduroja, with Texas Tech Physicians of El Paso and the Hospitals of Providence, explained kidney stones often develop without us even noticing.
He said kidney stones are substances that are usually found in urine, but did not properly dilute and create stone-like formations.
There are several factors that increase your chances of getting kidney stones.
Dr. Aduroja named diabetes and obesity as conditions that bring you higher risk, however lack of hydration and location can affect you too.
“We do see more kidney stones compared to other parts of the U.S. Like I said, the hotter the region the more likely you are to develop kidney stones,” Dr. Aduroja explained.
Many times, he said, you will not feel any symptoms until the stone(s) grow too big to be passed through your urinary tract.
“If they are over 10 millimeters it is unlikely you will pass them,” he explained.
Kidney stones will cause sharp and severe pain in kidney area, blood in urine and even urinary tract infections.
If you notice any of those symptoms, he suggests seeing your physicians that will perform and ultrasound or a CAT scan to determine the size of the kidney stones.
They can either be passed on their on but sometimes require a shock wave therapy procedure that breaks bigger stones down to be passed.
Depending on the size and location, the kidney stones will sometimes need surgical removal, Dr. Aduroja explained.
He strongly advises against using over the counter medication without consulting your physician first, despite it being FDA approved, explaining that the side effects may be damaging for the kidneys.
To reduce the risk of getting the kidney stones Dr. Aduroja suggests staying hydrated, deceasing your salt intake and, if you had kidney stones before, adjusting your diet accordingly will lower your risk of getting them again.