1. Do I really have to filter all of my urine for this test?
Yes, as long as you have a suspected stone and are instructed to do so by your doctor. Since it is impossible to determine when the stone will pass, it is important to screen all of the urine in order to catch it and send it for analysis.
2. Can I just test my blood or urine instead of the stone?
Blood and urine can give your doctor important information about your condition, but they will not tell the doctor exactly which chemical compounds constitute the stone. The more information your doctor has, the better the chance that he can help you prevent stone recurrence.
It depends upon the stone and will vary from person to person, but it is often severe and must sometimes be treated with strong prescription pain medications. For most people, the pain is most intense when the stone is moving through the urinary system.
4. If I have had a kidney stone, should I avoid calcium?
You should work with your doctor to determine the best treatment for you. Eating a diet that is naturally rich in calcium rarely causes kidney stones and protects your bones. About half a pint of milk a day or the equivalent in other dairy products such as yoghurt and cheese is about right. In some people, a drastic reduction in calcium in the diet can worsen stone formation as well as weaken bones. Reducing the amount of salt in the diet reduces the risk of stones by its effect on calcium excretion and has the added benefit of lowering blood pressure. It is therefore much more beneficial to avoid salt than calcium. Calcium that is taken in the form of supplements that are prescribed or bought from a pharmacy can increase the risk of producing stones. If you are taking such supplements and have had kidney stones, you should discuss this with your doctor.
5. How does the doctor find a stone in my urinary tract?
The doctor can use imaging tests (X-rays, CT scans, ultrasound scans) to locate and evaluate a kidney stone. These tests can help determine whether a stone is likely to pass out of the body without medical intervention.
7. What can I do to prevent a kidney stone and prevent recurrence?
Not every stone can be prevented, but the most helpful action is to drink a sufficient amount of water to remain well hydrated and to reduce salt and animal proteins in the diet. Other actions will depend upon your specific circumstances.
This article was last reviewed on 3 May 2012. | This article was last modified on 11 November 2013.
The review date indicates when the article was last reviewed from beginning to end to ensure that it reflects the most current science. A review may not require any modifications to the article, so the two dates may not always agree.
The modified date indicates that one or more changes were made to the article. Such changes may or may not result from a full review of the article, so the two dates may not always agree.