Kidney Stones In Children

Nephrolithiasis or kidney stones prevalence, within the United States continues to increase along with obesity. It has been reported that kidney stones in children is increasing by 6% annually (Huffington Post). In 2000 alone there were over 2 million visits were made to hospitals around the United States, which ended with a diagnosis of kidney stones.

What Are Kidney Stones

There are several different types of kidney stones including:

  • Cystine stones is made up of cystine crystals, which are amino acid and essential in building muscles and nerves. This type of stone is rare and has been linked to a genetic disorder.
  • Struvite stones contains mineral magnesium and ammonia. This type of stone has been linked to some sort of urinary infection.
  • Calcium stones contain calcium, which is essential in building strong bones and muscles. This type of stone has been linked to eating more calcium that the body can utilize.
  • Uric acid stones contain uric acid, which is an animal protein

What Causes Kidney Stones

  • Decreased consumption of water
  • Increased consumption of sodium, caffeine, and fructose
  • Urinary tract anomalies
  • Heredity
  • UTI
  • Children with metabolic disorders such as hypercalciuria has been linked to kidney stone formation

Symptoms of Kidney Stones in Children

  • Dysuria (pain on urination)
  • Hematuria (blood in urine)
  • Sharp pain in the back or lower abdominal area

Small stones may be able to pass, without too much difficulty.

How to Dissolve Kidney Stones

  • Shock wave lithotripsy (crushes the kidney stone, so passing will be easier)
  • Ureteroscope (removes the stones that is located in the ureter)
  • Lithotripsy with a ureteroscope (breaks up the stone to make it easier to pass)
  • Percutaneous nephrolithotomy (a tube is inserted through the child’s back and shock waves are used to break up the stone)

Preventions of Kidney Stones in Children

  • Limit calcium, sodium, fructose, and oxalate foods
  • Increase potassium citrate, while avoid purine foods (cystine stones)
  • Consume more water intake