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Kidney Stones in Children
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Kidney stones form in the urinary system when the water and waste in your child's urine are out of balance. When this happens, certain types of waste crystals separate from the urine. The crystals build up and form kidney stones. Kidney stones can be made of uric acid, calcium, phosphate, or oxalate crystals. Your child may have more than one kidney stone.
Return to the emergency department if:
- Your child cannot stop vomiting.
Contact your child's healthcare provider if:
- Your child has a fever.
- Your child has trouble urinating.
- You see blood in your child's urine.
- Your child has severe pain.
- You have any questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.
Your child may need any of the following:
- NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. This medicine is available with or without a doctor's order. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If your child takes blood thinner medicine, always ask if NSAIDs are safe for him or her. Always read the medicine label and follow directions. Do not give these medicines to children under 6 months of age without direction from your child's healthcare provider.
- Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask your child's healthcare provider how to give this medicine safely. Some prescription pain medicines contain acetaminophen. Do not give your child other medicines that contain acetaminophen without talking to your healthcare provider. Too much acetaminophen may cause liver damage. Prescription pain medicine may cause constipation. Ask your child's healthcare provider how to prevent or treat constipation.
- Medicines to balance your child's electrolytes may be needed.
- Do not give aspirin to children under 18 years of age. Your child could develop Reye syndrome if he takes aspirin. Reye syndrome can cause life-threatening brain and liver damage. Check your child's medicine labels for aspirin, salicylates, or oil of wintergreen.
- Give your child's medicine as directed. Contact your child's healthcare provider if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him or her if your child is allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs your child takes. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why they are taken. Bring the list or the medicines in their containers to follow-up visits. Carry your child's medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
What you can do to manage your child's kidney stones:
- Offer your child more liquids. Your child's healthcare provider may tell you to have your child drink at least 8 to 12 (eight-ounce) cups of liquids each day. This helps flush out the kidney stones when your child urinates. Water is the best liquid to drink.
- Strain your child's urine every time he or she goes to the bathroom. Have your child urinate through a strainer or a piece of thin cloth to catch the stones. Take the stones to your child's healthcare provider so they can be sent to a lab for tests. This will help your healthcare providers plan the best treatment for your child.
- Offer your child a variety of healthy foods. Healthy foods include fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, and fish. Your child may need to limit how much sodium (salt) or protein he or she eats. Ask for information about the best foods for your child.
- Encourage your child to exercise regularly. The stones may pass more easily if your child stays active. Exercise can also help your child manage his or her weight. Ask about the best activities for your child.
After your child passes the kidney stones:
Your child's healthcare provider may order a 24-hour urine test. Results from a 24-hour urine test will help the provider plan ways to prevent more stones from forming. Your child's healthcare provider will give you more instructions.
Follow up with your child's healthcare provider as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your child's visits.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
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