Kidney stones affect up to 5% of the population, with a lifetime risk of passing a kidney stone at about 8-10%. While more common in warmer southern states, they are a frequent reason for patients to seek urologic care in the northeast. Stones form twice as often in men as women. The peak age in men is 30 years; women have a bimodal age distribution, with peaks at 35 and 55 years. Once a kidney stone forms, the probability that a second stone will form within five to seven years is approximately 50%.
Kidney stones are small, hard mineral deposits that form inside the collecting system of the kidneys. These stones form when the urine becomes concentrated, allowing the minerals to crystallize and adhere to one another. The most common minerals are calcium, oxalate, phosphate and acid salts. This may occur due to several reasons including dehydration, dietary factors, chronic urinary infection and, less commonly, an underlying metabolic disorder. They form within the kidney but may affect any part of the urinary tract including the kidneys, ureters and/or bladder.
When you are diagnosed with a kidney stone, it is important to have a urologic evaluation in order to discuss your symptoms and management of the stone. Our specialists are available to provide an evaluation, as well as any needed follow-up treatment.
Once the stone has passed or been removed, it is important to determine your risk factors to minimize the chances of more episodes.