How to Pass a Kidney Stone Fast

Three Methods:Treating Kidney StonesUsing Unverified Herbal RemediesUnderstanding Kidney Stones

Your kidneys are responsible for filtering all the fluids in your body and removing all of the waste from your blood and lymphatic fluids.[1][2] Kidney stones develop when the minerals and acids from your urine crystallize and form deposits in the urinary tract.[3] These can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to pass, depending on how big they are — some, in fact, may be too big to pass on your own, and require medical intervention.[4] If you find yourself with kidney stones, there are ways you can help yourself pass them safely.

Method 1
Treating Kidney Stones

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    Drink lots of water. The most important thing you can do to help with your kidney stones is drink large amounts of water. This means you should drink way more water than you usually do a day, even if you drink the recommended amount. The recommended amount while you have kidney stones is two to three quarts (1.9 to 2.8 liters) a water a day. Have water on you at all times and continuously drink it. The more water you drink, the more diluted your urine will become.
    • This will help dissolve the salts in the kidney stone, which will help you pass the stone.
    • This will also help prevent a urinary tract infection, which is common with kidney stones.
    • Don't make yourself sick by drinking too much water at one time.[5]
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    Use pain relievers. The most common symptom of kidney stones is pain. To help with this, you can take over the counter pain relievers, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or acetaminophen (Tylenol), in small doses. NSAIDs include naproxen (Aleve), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), and aspirin.
    • Always follow the dosing and instructions on the label.
    • Your doctor may also prescribe you strong pain medication, such as opioids,[6][7][8] or prescription antispasmodic medications, such as tamsulosin (Flomax), alfuzosin, nifedipine, doxazosin, and terazosin. [9][10][11]
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    Take prescribed medications. In some cases, your doctor may prescribe you a water pill (diuretic). These will help break down deposits in your urine, which will help you pass your kidney stone even faster.
    • She may also give you potassium citrate, which will help break down the deposits and prevent them from forming.[12]
    • Your doctor may also give you an alpha blocker to help relax the muscles in your urinary tract, which will make it easier and less painful to pass them.[13]
    • If your kidney stone is caused by infection, it may be necessary for you to take antibiotics as well.[14]
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    See a urologist for treatment of large stones. In some cases, the kidney stone may be too large to break up on its own, or it may be blocking your urinary tract.[15] Your doctor will refer you to a urologist, who may use one of the following methods to break up the stone:
    • Shock wave lithotripsy: The doctor will use a special machine that delivers shockwaves to the stone, causing it to break up and allowing you to pass it through your urine. This is a non-surgical procedure, and the most common treatment.[16]
    • Percutaneous nephrolithotomy: The urologist will make an incision in your back and use a fiberoptic camera to locate the stone and remove it.[17] This surgery is performed under general anesthesia and you may need to stay in the hospital for a few days.
    • Ureteroscopy: The urologist will use a miniature camera, this time inserted through your urethra. Once the stone is located, the urologist will use a laser to break it up.[18]
    • Ureteral stents: A stent is a hollow tube that may be used to allow drainage around a large stone or support healing after surgery. It is temporarily inserted in the ureter — if left in too long, stones can form on the stent itself.[19]
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    Learn the cause of your kidney stone. Once the stone is broken up, your doctor may ask you to urinate through a sieve so the kidney stone can be filtered out of your urine. You will collect the bits of stone and give them to your doctor so she can determine the cause of your kidney stone.[20][21][22]
    • Your doctor may want to measure your urine output for 24 hours after you pass the stone. This way she can see how much urine you produce in a day — you may be more likely to develop stones if you don't produce enough urine.[23]
    • If your doctor determines you have calcium oxalate stones, she will suggest dietary changes to prevent future stones. You will need to reduce your sodium intake, as well as animal protein, and make sure you are getting adequate calcium. In addition you will have to be conscious of not eating foods high in oxalate. These foods include spinach, rhubarb, nuts, and wheat bran.[24]
    • If your stones are calcium phosphate stones, you will need to reduce sodium and animal protein. You will need to focus on calcium-rich foods.[25]
    • To prevent uric acid stones, you will simply need to cut back on animal proteins.[26]
    • Struvite stones can form when you have an infection, such as a urinary tract infection.[27]
    • Cystine stones are caused by a hereditary disorder called cystinuria. This disorder causes kidneys to release too much cystinuria, an amino acid.[28] If you have cystinuria, you will need to increase your fluid intake to prevent future stones from forming.

Method 2
Using Unverified Herbal Remedies

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    Consult your doctor. If you want to use herbal remedies for your kidney stones, talk to your doctor first. Some of the herbs used may interfere with some medications or cause other conditions to worsen. Let your doctor know what your plan is so she can make sure anything you plan to take is safe.
    • Very few herbal or home remedies are verified by scientific study — most evidence is anecdotal, or based on personal accounts.
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    Make celery juice. Raw celery juice and celery seed has antispasmodic, diuretic, and pain-relieving properties. This means these can help ease your pain as well as dissolve your kidney stones.
    • Use a juicer or blender to make celery juice. Drink three to four glasses of this juice a day.
    • You can also add celery seed to recipes to help with your stones as well.[29]
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    Use phyllanthus niruri. Phyllanthus niruri is a plant that has been in use in Brazil for years to treat kidney stones and kidney stone pain. There is no set dosage for this herb, so follow the instructions listed on the bottle when you buy it.
    • These are available as supplements and can be found at health food stores.[30][31][32]
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    Try white willow bark. White willow bark is an herb that helps reduce inflammation and pain in a similar fashion to aspirin, but without the same side effects caused by aspirin.
    • You can take this herb as a water drink by mixing 10 to 20 drops of liquid willow bark with a glass of water. Take this four to five times a day.
    • You can also buy it as a 400 mg capsule, which should be taken four to six times a day. [33]
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    Use devil’s claw. Devil's claw has been used to treat kidney issues, including kidney stones, because of its pain relieving properties. This herbal remedy is available as a 400 to 500 mg capsule. Always follow manufacturer’s instructions for this drug.
    • There has not been any clinical evidence that this remedy works, but it is a common folk remedy.[34]
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    Make a lemon and vinegar mixture. You can make a lemon and apple cider vinegar mixture to help with your kidney stones. Mix ½ ounce lemon juice, 12 ounces of water along, and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar.
    • Repeat every hour to help with pain.[35]

Method 3
Understanding Kidney Stones

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    Recognize the pain of kidney stones. Kidney stones are generally very small and can occur without any symptoms. The symptoms start when the stone gets large enough to block the kidneys, block the ureter (tube leading from the kidneys), or if they have caused an infection. The main symptoms is pain, which is generally:[36][37]
    • Severe but usually intermittent
    • Sharp or stabbing
    • Localized in your back, usually along the edges of your back, in your lower abdomen, or in your groin. The pain placement will depend on where the stone is sitting in your urinary tract.
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    Notice severe symptoms. Although pain is the most common and consistent symptom, there are other symptoms that you may experience with kidney stones. This will depend on how large the stone is and how it is affecting you. If you experience any of the following, contact your doctor immediately:[38][39]
    • Nausea
    • Vomiting
    • Sweating
    • Bloody, cloudy, or foul-smelling urine
    • Fever
    • Pain while urinating
    • Extreme pain in your back or lower abdomen that won't go away
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    Know the risks. Kidney stones are a very common condition that can affect anyone at any time. This condition affects around 5% of the population at some point in their lifetime, though this number is on the rise. You are most at risk for kidney stones if you are a white male between the ages of 40 and 70 and white women from age 50 to 70.
    • Despite this high risk, the number of cases of kidney stones in young adult patients has doubled in the last 25 years. Though no clear cause has been discovered, researchers believe this has been caused by obesity, weight issues, or the increase in the consumption of soft drinks.[40]
    • Other risk factors include history of kidney stones in your family, your diet, some medications, taking more than 2 g of vitamin C a day, history of kidney disease, and your ethnic background. White males are three times more likely to get kidney stones than African-American men. [41][42][43]
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    Diagnose kidney stones. Once you go to the doctor, she will ask you for a history of your symptoms, check you for current symptoms, and take a urine sample. This sample will undergo laboratory analysis to check the levels of minerals and other substances in your urine. Before proceeding with treatment, your doctor will need to confirm that you are suffering from kidney stones and not something else.
    • Your doctor may also order some imaging techniques, such as x-rays, CT scans, or MRI scans.


  • Although a popular home remedy, there is no concrete medical evidence that cranberry juice or other home remedies help prevent or get rid of kidney stones.[44]

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Categories: Urinary Health