Stones of the Kidney

Stones of the Kidney, Ureter and Bladder

Stones in the urinary tract are common. Often these do not produce symptoms and are detected accidentally. Some of the conditions causing stones are genetic in nature. Recurrence of these stones is common, although difficult to diagnose correctly but if not treated in time may lead to permanent damage to the kidney.

Recurrent stone disease should always be investigated thoroughly to find out the underlying cause.

Investigations Involve

Analysis of the stone if it has been passed spontaneously or removed surgically.

Urine routine examination to look for crystals of oxalates, uric acid, cystine or other salts.

Blood tests are done for levels of calcium, uric acid, oxalate, acid content, phosphorus, magnesium, parathormone levels etc. Kidney function also needs to be evaluated at the time.

X Rays are carried out to know whether the stones are radioopaque (seen on X Rays) or radiolucent (seen only on USG).

Urine tests are done to know specific gravity, acidity, calcium excretion, urate excretion, citrate excretion etc.

For urine tests, 24 hour collection of urine is collected in acidic and alkaline media and then analysed.

In most cases of recurrent stone formations, a cause can be found or excluded and a proper therapy is instituted.

Proteins

Proteins in the Diet

Proteins are made of amino-acids, which join together to form peptides, poly-peptides and finally proteins.

These take part in the maintenance of biological functions, growth and death of the body. These are essential parts of the diet and are 2nd most common molecules after water in the body.

The nine essential amino-acids not produced in the body are  phenylalaninevalinethreoninetryptophanmethionineleucineisoleucinelysine, and histidine.

The dietary requirements for proteins are about 1 gm/kg/day in adults. Children and pregnant and lactating mothers require additional amounts.

Higher quantities of protein increase acid content in the body. To compensate for this kidneys have to excrete higher amounts in the urine. Calcium excretion also increases. This may result in a tendency towards stone formation. Acidosis may result in osteoporosis.

Protein lack in the diet is a part of protein-energy malnutrition. This can result in growth retardation in children, increased incidence of infections, debility and if severe death. Low albumin levels in the body make a person more susceptible to cardiovascular and cerebrovascular accidents.

Protein deficiency can result from a poor intake, poor absorption from the intestines, increased losses from urine, skin (burns etc.), gastrointestinal tract, or increased destruction as in severe infections. Metabolism of proteins may be disturbed in genetic disorders and liver ailments also.