ID: 115
Category: Urology
CreatedBy: 1
UpdatedBy: 1
createdon: 14 Jul 2017
updatedon: 04 Apr 2023

For Bots

Author: Khoa Tran
Published Jul 14, 2017
Updated Apr 04, 2023

Table of contents

Suggest changes

Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Etymology and Pronunciation

Nephrolithiasis (nef-roh-lih-THY-uh-sis)
nephros - Greek for "kidney"
lithos - Greek for "stone"
iasis - Greek for "disease"

History of Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

The ancient Egyptians believed that kidney stones were caused by a build-up of excess fluids in the body, and they used a range of treatments, including herbal remedies and hot baths, to try to relieve the symptoms of the condition.

In ancient Greece, the physician Hippocrates wrote about kidney stones and described the condition as a "hard, crystalline deposit" that formed in the urinary tract. He believed that the condition was caused by an excess of certain substances in the body, such as bile and phlegm, and he recommended a range of treatments, including diet modifications and herbal remedies, to try to prevent and treat kidney stones.

Over the centuries, medical knowledge of kidney stones continued to develop, with physicians and researchers beginning to identify the specific chemical components of the stones and the factors that contributed to their formation. In the 19th century, advances in microscopy and chemistry allowed researchers to study kidney stones in greater detail, leading to a better understanding of their composition and the underlying causes of the condition.

Modern Understanding of Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Kidney stones (also called Nephrolithiasis or Renal calculi) are small, hard deposits that form in the kidneys. They are made of minerals and acid salts, and can range in size from tiny grains to large pebbles. In some cases, they can also cause blockages in the urinary tract.

Symptoms of kidney stones can include kidney pain, back pain, abdominal pain, groin pain, nausea, vomiting, hematuria (blood in the urine), dysuria (painful urination), and ureteral obstruction. This blockage can cause a condition called renal colic, which is a sudden and severe pain in the side, back, or lower abdomen.

Diagnosis of kidney stones can be done through various methods such as CT scan, ultrasound, X-ray, ureterorenoscopy, and percutaneous nephrolithotomy. Treatment options for kidney stones include shock wave lithotripsy, ureteral stent, and in severe cases, surgery.

Causes of Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Kidney stones are caused by a variety of factors, including a lack of fluid intake, certain medical conditions, and a family history of the condition. Some people are more likely to develop kidney stones, such as those who have had them before, are overweight, or have a diet high in protein and salt.

Kidney stones can be made of different types of minerals, including calcium stones, oxalate stones, uric acid stones, struvite stones, and cystine stones. The type of stone that is formed depends on the individual's diet, fluid intake, and other factors.

Treatments for Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Treatment for kidney stones depends on the size and location of the stone, but may include drinking plenty of water to flush the stone out of the body, pain medication, or surgery to remove the stone. Depending on the size and location of the stone, treatment options may include ureterorenoscopy, percutaneous nephrolithotomy, shock wave lithotripsy, or the placement of a ureteral stent.

If you experience symptoms of kidney stones, it is important to see a healthcare provider as soon as possible. Treatment can help prevent the stones from causing serious complications and alleviate the pain and discomfort associated with kidney stones.

To prevent kidney stones from forming, it is important to drink plenty of water and maintain a healthy diet. Limiting the consumption of foods and drinks high in salt, sugar, and animal protein can also help. In other words, avoid foods high in oxalates and purines. Lifestyle changes and dietary modifications can also help reduce the risk of developing kidney stones.


Abdominal pain
Blood in the urine/pee
Pain or burning during urination/peeing
Back pain

Confirmation Tests

- Ultrasound
- Urinalysis