Kidney stones are not uncommon. Many adults require treatment for this condition at some point. But children? Could a solid piece of material formed from matter in the urine get trapped in a child’s kidney? Yes, it could. Here, we discuss details about kidney stones and what parents need to know about pediatric urology as a resource for kidney stone symptoms.
What is a Kidney Stone?
A kidney stone gets its name from its structure. A stone is a solid piece of matter that forms when substances found in the urine become concentrated in the kidneys. Kidney stones may remain in the kidneys or may travel down the urinary tract, depending on size. When a small kidney stone passes, it may present no symptoms at all. The larger a stone is, the more likely it is to cause discomfort, urinary problems, and even blood in the urine.
The urinary tract is a type of drainage system through which extra water and wastes are removed from the body. This system includes two kidneys, two ureters, the bladder, and one urethra. One kidney is located on each side of the body, toward the middle of the back and below the ribs. These small organs filter about 3 ounces of blood every minute. Wastes and extra water are removed from the blood and become urine. Urine is stored in the bladder until it is excreted through the ureter.
Kidney Stones in Children
Studies are ongoing to measure statistics related to pediatric kidney stones. Urologists have reported an increasing number of cases in recent years, though it is unclear why. Based on current information, we know that kidney stones are more common in adults but could occur in infants, children, and teens of all ethnicities.
Kidney stones form as a result of a buildup of particular materials found in the urine. These include magnesium calcium, phosphorous, and oxalate. This accumulation of matter may occur for several reasons. In children, it seems as though kidney stones are primarily diagnosed secondary to an anatomic abnormality in the urinary tract.
However, genetic and lifestyle factors can also contribute to this condition.
If a child has pain while urinating, sharp pain in the lower abdomen or back, or blood in the urine, they could benefit from a visit with a pediatric urologist. In cases of small kidney stones, no formal treatment may be needed. Larger kidney stones may be broken apart using focused ultrasound waves. Our renowned team of urologists develops treatment based on the factors of each case.
We’re here to help you and your family thrive. Call (423) 778-5910 for more information regarding pediatric urology and kidney stones.