Kidney Stones Medical Therapy

Patients who suffer from recurrent stones may benefit from a medical workup. This may include stone analysis as well as blood and urine tests. Your doctor will decide which tests are appropriate for you. In some patients these tests may reveal abnormalities in your blood or urine, which may predispose you to kidney stones. Sometimes these abnormalities may be corrected with medical therapy, which can help prevent stone growth and recurrence.

Kidney Stone Surgery

For large kidney stones that can’t be effectively treated with lithotripsy or ureteroscopy, your urologist can perform a minimally invasive surgery through a 1-centimeter incision in your back. Using a scope and special tools, the urologist can break apart the stone and suction it out. This typically requires hospitalization at least overnight.

Neurogenic Bladder

Neurogenic bladder is when a problem in your brain, spinal cord or central nervous system makes you lose control of your bladder. Symptoms may be similar to both overactive bladder (OAB) and underactive bladder (UAB) depending on what’s causing the condition. Treatment will depend on what’s causing your symptoms and how serious they are. There’s no cure for neurogenic bladder, but symptoms can be managed.

Female Incontinence

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) is a leakage of urine during moments of physical activity that increases abdominal pressure, such as coughing, sneezing, laughing or exercise. SUI is the most common type of urinary incontinence in women but can affect both sexes. Many people think urinary incontinence is part of the aging process, but it is not. It can be managed and treated. SUI can happen when pelvic tissues and muscles, which support the bladder and urethra, become weak and allow the bladder “neck” (where the bladder and urethra intersect) to descend during bursts of physical activity. This descent can prevent the urethra from working properly to control the flow of urine. Weakness may occur from pregnancy, childbirth, aging or prior pelvic surgery.

Bladder Cancer

Bladder cancer most often begins in the cells (urothelial cells) that line the inside of your bladder, a hollow muscular organ in your lower abdomen that stores urine. Most bladder cancers are diagnosed at an early stage, when the cancer is highly treatable. But even early-stage bladder cancers can come back after successful treatment. For this reason, people with bladder cancer typically need follow-up tests for years after treatment to look for bladder cancer that recurs.

Blood in Urine

Hematuria is the presence of blood, specifically red blood cells, in the urine. Whether the blood is visible only under a microscope or visible to the naked eye, hematuria is a sign that something is causing bleeding in the genitourinary tract. Causes of this condition range from non-life threatening (e.g., urinary tract infection) to profoundly serious (e.g., cancer, kidney disease). Therefore, a health care provider should be consulted as soon as possible.

Overactive Bladder

Overactive bladder (OAB) is a common condition that affects millions of Americans. Overactive bladder isn’t a disease; it is the name of a group of urinary symptoms involving problems with bladder-storage function. The most common symptom of OAB is a sudden urge to urinate that you can’t control. Some people will leak urine when they feel the urge. Leaking urine is called “incontinence.” Having to go to the bathroom many times during the day and night is another symptom of OAB.

Interstitial Cystitis

Interstitial cystitis (IC)/bladder pain syndrome (BPS) is a chronic bladder health issue that causes a feeling of pain and pressure in the bladder area. Along with this pain are lower urinary tract symptoms that have lasted for more than six weeks, without having an infection or other clear causes. IC can affect people of any age, race or sex. It is, however, most commonly found in women. No single treatment works for all people with IC/BPS. Treatment must be chosen for each patient based on symptoms. Patients usually try different treatments (or combinations of treatments) until good symptom relief occurs.

Urinary Tract Infection

A urinary tract infection (UTI) occurs when bacteria gets into your urine and travels up to your bladder. UTIs cause more than 8.1 million visits to health care providers each year. UTIs can be found by analyzing a urine sample under a microscope for bacteria or white blood cells, which are signs of infection. A UTI is usually easily treated with a course of a medicine called an antibiotic.

 

Adrenal Cancer

The adrenal glands are a production center for regulatory hormones such as adrenaline and cortisone. For this reason, many of the symptoms of adrenal cancer are related to hormonal imbalances resulting from tumors secreting too much or too little of a particular hormone. A large percentage of tumors on the adrenal glands are benign. These tumors may grow very large and put pressure on nearby organs like the stomach, but they do not spread to other parts of the body. The average age of diagnosis is around 44.