Passing Kidney Stones in Men
Passing a kidney stone is a painful process. Kidney stones are formed by crystallization of mineral matters found normally in urine after every metabolic process. Stones in the kidney itself do not cause any pain. The pain is experienced when the stones try to pass through ureters and enter the urinary bladder. Ureters are ducts that carry urine away from the kidneys to the bladder. Tiny crystals can easily pass through these ducts asymptomatically. Larger stones encounter some difficulty to pass through easily and as they approach the bladder, pain may radiate to the groin area or scrotum in men. Big stones may not move out of the kidney or can even get lodged in the ureters, blocking normal flow of urine.
Men are more prone to developing kidney stones than women. This may be because men experience greater occurrences of lower urinary tract obstruction due to the disease condition called prostate enlargement. This partly muscular and partly glandular organ is situated just below the urinary bladder in men and secrets viscid fluid to carry and release sperm during ejaculation. Every male individual experiences prostate growth throughout their lifetime. However, in some it grows at a more rapid rate. When they get big, they hinder normal flow of urine out of the bladder and cause incomplete urination. This accumulation of urine leads to crystallization of urine mineral matters that can collect into clusters and finally cause solid kidney stones. Treating prostate enlargement successfully will reduce kidney stone occurrences in men.
As men approach their forties, their risk of being affected by kidney stones also increases. The most common type of kidney stone formed among men seems to be the calcium type. This may be due to the fact that the metabolizing abilities of certain food groups, like those containing more of calcium (calcium supplements) and sodium, decreases as the body ages increasing the risk of symptomatic kidney stone formation. High salt intake encourages more calcium release from bones, increasing urinary calcium levels leading to stone formation.
How to Prevent Kidney Stones in Men
Most individuals are able to pass tiny stones out of the urinary tract completely after drinking adequate amounts of water. Drink plenty of fluids, mostly water. As much as two liters of fluids in a day will flush out the urinary system totally. Increasing urine flow will help in eliminating small stones and maintaining urine in alkaline state constantly will discourage crystal formation.
Also stone passage can be made easy by using alpha blockers, especially to rid the moderate sized stones. This group of medicine work by relaxing the urinary tract muscles, causing the ducts to become wider. This enables increased amounts of fluid to pass through, hastening the exit of kidney stones out of the system.
Large sized stones will need to be broken into tiny fragments to aid in their successful elimination. For this extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy medical technique may be employed, which is a non-invasive procedure that can be performed as an outpatient. Shock waves passed through the body cause strong vibrations, strong enough to rupture the stones into tiny pieces. The pieces eventually move out of the system along with urine.