Symptoms of Gallstones or Kidney Stones

Symptoms of Gallstones or Kidney Stones
Symptoms of Gallstones or Kidney Stones (Image: Medical Stock Photos Database

Gallstones and kidney stones aren't exactly the same thing, but their symptoms are often similar. Kidney stones are debris made of calcium deposits found in the urinary tract that occur when there are high levels of calcium in the urine. Gallstones, on the other hand, are formed from high levels of cholesterol. These stones develop in the gall bladder as high concentrations of bile and cholesterol form painful stones that need to be passed.

Extreme Pain

Most often the first symptom that you will feel is extreme pain. This begins sharply and suddenly as the stone moves either in the urinary tract or the gall bladder, causing irritation and blockage. Usually you will feel sharp pain in your sides and back which eventually travels down the stomach and into the groin. Passing a kidney stone has often been compared to the pain of giving birth.

Blood in Urine

As the stones are trying to pass through the bladder walls the tissue in the urinary tract often gets torn by the sharp, jagged edges of the stone and will induce bleeding. If you see irregular amounts of blood in your urine you might be suffering from kidney stones or gallstones. As the stone grows and moves its way through your urinary tract, expect to have more bleeding and discomfort.

Burning Urination

One common symptom of gall and bladder stones is frequent, sometimes burning, urination. As the stones move down the urethra, ever closer to the bladder, you will feel and increased urge to urinate as well as other discomfort, possibly burning. This is common and means that it is reaching the bladder and on its way out.

Fever and Chills

You might also have a fever and possible chills as an infection may be present. If you are feeling these additional flu-like symptoms make sure you consult with a doctor immediately.

Extreme Abdominal Pain

Extreme abdominal pain is usually associated with both conditions, but more prevalent in passing gallstones. A common symptom of this is a sharp pain in the upper right part of the abdomen, right under the ribs. This is a result of the gallstone passing through the small intestine. It will appear suddenly and can sometimes last a few hours. The pain may get worse suddenly and may extend to the back between the shoulders. Along with this you might feel nausea, a bloated sensation in the stomach and an urge to vomit.

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