The first thing I must mention here is the fact that if you suffer from gout, you are at a higher risk of developing kidney stones. The explanation is simple. Uric acid levels affect both issues and they should be prevented or treated if they already have occurred, obviously. So, I must add that gout and kidney stones are more than just connected.
First facts regarding kidney stones
The name kidney stone explains the issue in question. Basically, in your urinary tract, a small stone or stones will be formed due to several chemicals including uric acid. Men are at the highest risk, especially that age 40 or above. Those age 70 or above are at even higher risk. Keep in mind that one of 20 men will develop kidney stones at some point in his lifetime.
A more concerning matter is the fact that once appeared, kidney stones will reappear and so on, so they are causing long and repetitive issues. The main issue is the pain which is always present. In most cases this is the same type of pain, gout sufferers must withstand. Some of the symptoms you will notice include the lower amount of urine and burning feeling while peeing.
Causes of kidney stones
There are literally several reasons why kidney stones appear. Calcium or oxalate mixed with phosphorus is the first and the main cause. But, uric acid can cause kidney stones as well. We all know that all gout sufferers have a high level of this acid, therefore the higher risk of appearing kidney stones. Those kidney stones which have occurred due to high uric acid levels are the most dangerous and the most difficult to discover because they cannot be seen under X-ray. They are also the most complicated to remove from the body.
Kidney stones can damage the kidneys so you will need dialysis or a transplant. This occurs simply because the stones will damage the kidneys with sharp edges. Furthermore, the risk of an infection is higher as well. The stones may block the canals in the kidneys and prevent them from eliminating toxins and other chemicals. Additional symptoms include pain in groin area, blood in urine, vomiting, stomach pain and fever.
Gout patients have 60% higher risk of developing kidney stones
There has been a study conducted last year in Sweden. They discovered that people who suffer from gout have 60% more chances to develop kidney stones at some point. They also discovered that obese and people with diabetes are more likely to develop this issue!
In order to reduce the risk of kidney stones, you will have to stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water has a positive effect on the kidneys, simply because it will remove the toxins and flush them, reducing the small stones, if they have been formed already. Here I must add that small kidney stones are harmless. Yes, they cause pain as well, but they won’t permanently damage your kidneys.
As I have mentioned, drinking plenty of water is mandatory. Doctors recommend 8 cups of water per a day, but I would go for 12 cups of day. The more water you drink, the lower the risk of kidney stones will be. Try to remember that people who sweat a lot, you must drink even more fluids, up to 16 cups per a day. All of this is important due to the aforementioned reasons.
Additionally, taking a daily dosage of allopurinol is mandatory. This medication is developed in order to reduce the kidney stones risk and prevent their future formation. It is an essential medication for all of us, gout sufferers.
The last but not least, you should visit a doctor as soon as you feel pain in your stomach or groin. In most cases, you will get only a pain relief medication. This is good because it means that the kidney stones are very small so they can be removed without medical intervention. In a case, they are much bigger or they have started damaging kidneys, a medical procedure will have to be performed in order to remove the stones completely.
As you can see, all of us, gout sufferers are at a higher risk of developing kidney stones. They are a severe issue which is painful and can permanently damage the kidneys. So, yes gout and kidney stones are more linked that you may believe and there are several facts I have mentioned here which deserve your attention and which must be taken into consideration. If you follow them, you will significantly decrease the risk of kidney stones and therefore have a much better life.