Kidney Stones

Gulf Coast Urology

Urologists located in Houston, TX & Nassau Bay, TX

Kidney stones are hard deposits that can affect any part of your urinary tract, causing pain in your back and trouble with urination. At Gulf Coast Urology in Houston, Texas, the team offers comprehensive diagnostic services to identify the cause of kidney stones and effective treatments to remove them, such as minimally invasive surgical procedures. Schedule a consultation online or by phone to relieve kidney stone pain.

Why do kidney stones form?

Kidney stones can develop due to diet, some medical conditions, being overweight or obese, or certain supplements. The stones are clumps of solid materials made up of minerals and salts found in your urine, including phosphorus, calcium, and oxalate.

Stones may be unseeable to the naked eye. They can also be significant, some even the size of a chickpea. Smaller stones are typically able to pass through the body undetected. Larger stones can get trapped in the urinary tract and cause persistent pain. 

What symptoms suggest I have kidney stones?

You may have kidney stones if you experience the following symptoms:

  • Vomiting
  • Bloody or cloudy urine
  • Severe back or side pain
  • Fever or chills
  • A burning sensation while urinating

Kidney stone-related pain may come and go or last for several days without relief. Seek medical help for these symptoms.

Who is at risk of developing kidney stones?

Anyone who has had kidney stones in the past is at increased risk of developing them again. Men are also at a higher risk of developing kidney stones. 

Other factors that influence the development of kidney stones include:

  • Obesity 
  • Kidney disease
  • Bowel inflammation
  • Gout
  • Urinary tract blockages
  • Digestive problems
  • Not drinking enough water

Certain medications, like calcium-based antacids, also increase your risk of developing kidney stones.

How do you treat kidney stones?

If you have symptoms of kidney stones, the team reviews your medical and family history to determine the likelihood of kidney stones. You may also undergo an ultrasound to identify the stones and their location. For smaller stones, the treatment may be to drink more fluids to help the stones pass.

For stones too large to pass naturally, your doctor may prescribe medications such as pain relievers or alpha-blockers to help relax the ureter, allowing the stones to pass.

In some cases, minimally invasive surgical procedures are required to break up or remove kidney stones. These treatments include:

  • Shock wave therapy: Which breaks up the stones into smaller pieces
  • Percutaneous Nephrolithotomy: This surgical procedure removes the stones
  • Ureteroscopy: This procedure involves using a camera to view the stones and lasers to break them up

If you have symptoms of kidney stones, get the treatment and care you need at Gulf Coast Urology. Call today or use the online tool to schedule your appointment.

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