Kidney stones a simple patient guide what is a kidney stone the kidneys filter the blood and form urine kidney stones are deposits that form from mineral and acid salts in the kidney they vary in size from the size of a grain of sand to large stones that can block drainage from the kidneys kidney stones form when there is an excess of a crystal forming substance such as calcium or uric acid in the blood a common cause is dehydration sometimes as a result of failing to drink enough . Sometimes salts and other minerals in urine stick together to form small kidney stones these range from the size of a sugar crystal to a ping pong ball but they are rarely noticed unless they. Asymptomatic kidney stones should be followed with serial imaging and should be removed in case of growth symptoms urinary obstruction recurrent infections or lack of access to health care. Kidney stones can develop in one or both kidneys and most often affect people aged 30 to 60 theyre quite common with around three in 20 men and up to two in 20 women developing them at some stage of their lives. Usually physicians have allocated a fixed amount of time to a first visit for kidney stone prevention so you need to know the usual practice typical times for busy medical practitioners can be short 15 to 20 minutes total with at least 2 3 minutes used up for the computer this generally leaves about 12 to 17 working minutes
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