Explaining Kidney Stones in Children (1 of 5)

Explaining Kidney Stones in Children (1 of 5)

>> Historically when we were thinking of kidney stones we thought of it as an adult disease
with a very few rare children that were affected by stones.
>> It seems that more and more children are developing kidney stones.
>> In the last 15 years, the incidence of kidney stones in children has doubled, quadrupled
in some communities. Various reasons have been attributed; diet, the way we drink, what
we drink. >> It usually comes as a great surprise to
parents that their child has a kidney stone. >> They’re almost always stunned for us to
tell them that yes, what I’m showing you on this ultrasound is a kidney stone, and it’s
nothing to be afraid of, but it’s there and it’s something that we’re going to need to
deal with. >> The best care for many children with kidney
stones would include involvement of a number of doctors and other specialists.
>> The kidneys are two organs that exist in what we call the retroperitoneum. That’s the
space behind the belly cavity. They filter the blood and by removing all the byproducts,
of metabolism, they ultimately form what we know as urine. Within that urine are all the
waste products or many of the waste products that our body produces.
>> Some of those substances can crystalize and turn into kidney stones, which can get
stuck in the kidney. >> These minerals in the urine are like little
snowflakes, so when there’s too much of a mineral or maybe something as simple as not
enough water in the system that concentrates the urine, now, there’s more potential for
these snowflakes to get together and form snowballs.
>> As they form in the kidney sometimes they just can sit there, but oftentimes they can
move around and then sometimes get stuck in the ureter, which is the tube that drains
the kidney down into the bladder. >> They are pretty narrow tubes and when the
stone comes down, it’s very much like a blocked sink. So the water behind it builds up into
the kidney while the kidney is trying to push it down. This tug-of-war is what causes the
pain and the symptoms associated with it. >> This is a chronic condition, which is likely
to potentially recur over the rest of the patient’s life.
>> By diagnosing and treating the causes of the stones you can really make them better
and make a major impact for the rest of their lives that they’ll be symptom free and pain
free. >> We’re now seeing as many as 400 new stones
a year between our Nephrology Team, our Urology Team, and all of the outpatient centers that
we’re working with. >> This is really what would define an epidemic.
That’s a disease that at some point was much less common that for many reasons is now becoming
increasingly common in our population. So, it’s really that increasing incidence of kidney
stones that drove us to develop this kidney stone center.
>> The center that could be the expertise in this to zone in on what’s causing this
disease in our pediatric population and to better manage their care.


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