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Kidney Stones Research

Posted Nov 06 2010 8:43am


Kidney stones have been present for a very long time in human history. It was said to have been found in a mummy that is over seven thousand years old. That should be enough proof that humans have long been afflicted by it. These days though people are more aware of kidney stones, why they exist and what to do about them.

Proper information that states how usual it is to develop kidney stones reduces a lot of panic because now you do not have to immediately rush to the emergency room. People now know that drinking lots of water is not just for beautiful skin but also for a healthy kidney.

There maybe times though when drinking tons of water is not enough so more drastic measures need to be taken because the kidney stones cannot be flushed through urine. Here then comes the next option which is surgery. It used to be open surgery procedure for kidney stone removal but in recent years, doctors have found a way to take out kidney stones without the patient having to go under the knife.

Three of the most popular kidney removal surgeries are extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL), percutaneous nephrolithotomy and ureteroscopy. It is very important to remember that all your decisions should be carefully though of and that you should always be constantly coordinating with your doctor. There should be a thorough understanding of the different procedures and more significant is the awareness of the different risks involved.

The Division of Kidney, Urologic and Hematolgic Diseases of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) maybe a mouthful but its cause is something that is really worth fighting for. The group sources and manages funds for research on the causes, treatments, and prevention of kidney stones. This group affiliated with the National Institutes of Health in Bethseda, MD is so passionate that new medicines and the growing field of lithotripsy have been a great help in finding safer and better treatments for kidney stones. This is really good news for those who are victims of kidney stones otherwise known as the silent stone because it can go on undetected.

Some of the questions this group want answered include: Why do some people continue to have painful stones? What are the long term effects of lithotripsy? What is/are the natural substance(s) found in urine that blocks stone formation? How can medicine help people identify symptoms of kidney stone formation? Finding the answers to these questions are very crucial in advancing the research so that soon kidney stones prevention and treatment will be as easy as preventing or treating coughs and colds.

With the hope of good things to come in the field of kidney stone research, we go back to the basics. First, someone who is at risk for developing stones may need certain blood and urine tests to determine which factors can be controlled to reduce risks. Second, the first and most elementary way to prevent kidney stones from forming is to drink plenty of fluids and that means more than eight glasses of water a day.

Last and certainly not the least is to keep in mind that getting treated is not enough. A person undergoing treatment should be patient in doing follow up tests to make sure that the treatment is working.

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