Kidney pain is felt on the sides or back and is often mistaken for back pain. Kidney pain can be caused by kidney stones, urinary tract infection, kidney infection, injury, or kidney cancer. For more information, you can read our article below.
What is kidney pain?
Kidney pain is seen on the sides, especially in and around the kidney area. Depending on whether one or both kidneys are affected, kidney pain may occur on the right, left, or both sides. Back pain affects movement and often prevents you from moving, but this does not always mean kidney pain will be a condition.
If this happens, if you feel pain or intensify when you put pressure on your kidneys with your hand, this indicates a kidney problem. In this case, you need to have a urine test.
Kidney pain can also occur during pregnancy , so it is not initially clear whether it is back pain or kidney pain .
Kidney pain occurs during pregnancy when, due to pressure on the urinary tract, urine backs up into the pelvic system. Then there may be talk of a kidney blockage that needs to be treated quickly.
In the case of prolonged pain in the kidneys, if there is no explanation for an infection or disease, it is helpful to look at the musculo-fascial structures in the kidney area.
What causes kidney pain?
Due to anatomical conditions, kidney pain is not always directly related to the kidney. The muscles in the urinary tract or kidney area can also cause pain.
Kidney pain can be attributed to a wide variety of causes. If you are not sure what is causing your discomfort, see a doctor first. Because pain in the kidney area can have very serious backgrounds
Some of the more common causes of kidney pain are listed below:
1- Pelvic inflammation
When talking about inflammation, the cause is always bacterial contamination of the area. They activate the body’s defense system, which can cause inflammation.
Inflammation can be very painful. However, it is possible for pain to occur only when healthy tissue is already severely damaged.
Most often, inflammation of the kidney area is caused by an increased infection. The focus of infection is the bladder.
Women are generally more susceptible to this type of inflammation because their urethra of 2.5 to 4 cm is five times shorter than a man’s. Therefore, microbes can penetrate more easily.
Infection can result from using an unsanitary toilet, or germs penetrate as part of poor hygiene or sexual intercourse. These inflammations are not uncommon in pregnancy.
In addition, hygiene in the genital area is often done incorrectly and care products are used that destroy the protective layer of the body in the genital area. This makes it easier for bacteria to enter the body.
2- Kidney stone
Kidney pain can also be caused by kidney stones . These can occur when there is too much potassium, sodium, or other minerals in the body and they crystallize in the urine.
A great deal of blood is filtered through the kidneys every day. This is how your urine is formed. It contains minerals that can be absorbed by the body, but only to the extent necessary.
Some protrusions in this system can form large crystals and then stones. Urinary tract obstruction and inadequate hydration play a role in kidney stone formation.
If stones are formed, they can cause kidney pain because they are not excreted through the urinary tract, and the resulting pressure causes pain to be felt.
What should we do to get rid of kidney stones? Our article may also interest you.
3- Urinary tract obstruction
Kidney pain can be caused by urinary tract obstruction.
If you already suffer from voiding disorders or have a natural, neurological disorder, urine may flow back from the bladder to the kidney.
On the one hand, the blockage causes pain, on the other hand, bacteria can be carried, which can cause kidney inflammation.
4- Kidney cancer
Is there any kidney cancer in your family? If so then you should have a regular checkup. Because heredity plays an important role in kidney cancer.
However, obesity, smoking and malnutrition are also risks that can lead to the development of cancer. Especially when body cells are exposed to a large number of pollutants, they can degenerate more easily.
Stenoses are changes due to narrowing of the urinary vessels. Thus, urine can no longer flow properly and this causes kidney pain.
6- Kidney infarction
The kidney, like any other organ, is connected with many blood vessels, as it needs to be supplied with enough blood to function properly.
Embolism or thrombosis can lead to vascular occlusion, which restricts or stops the functioning of the kidney. If this is noticed late, the function of the kidney may be completely lost.
Especially overweight patients and smokers are affected by this risk of vascular occlusion.
7- Other organic causes
Women who are in the period of pregnancy often have pain phenomena that are not related to a disease. Depending on the condition of the child and the attitude of the expectant mother, these painful events are not uncommon.
In connection with stress, there can always be false loads on the body and muscle tension. If you have kidney pain associated with physical or psychological stress, it is not necessarily directly related to an illness. Conversely, the pain can also be explained by overstretched muscles in the kidney area.
Pain specialists Dr. Petra Bracht and Roland Liebscher-Bracht have many years of experience in the treatment of patients with pain complaints in the kidney and lumbar region.
They look at overstretched, overworked muscles, fascia, and in the treatment of these patients they see again and again that pain in the kidney area can in many cases be attributed to the muscles. This extends from the ilium to the ribs in the kidney area.
Unilateral movement, always the same movement sequences, minimal movement potential, and very little endurance sports are explanatory factors for pain in addition to stress.
Kidney pain and possible accompanying symptoms
Whatever symptoms you find in yourself, visiting a doctor is the safest way to get the right treatment and diagnosis.
You should see your doctor for the following symptoms:
- Low back pain and stinging pain on the sides extending to the lower abdomen and groin are typical symptoms of kidney pain.
- Chills and fever can also indicate kidney inflammation.
- If you find blood in your urine, if you suddenly have stomach pain, if you have circulation problems, nausea or vomiting, you may have kidney stones.
- Blood in the urine is a symptom of kidney trauma. In the case of this disease, the kidney capsule may have ruptured due to a previous accident and a prompt response from a doctor is required.
- If you have complaints about loss of appetite, blood in your urine, tiredness and kidney pain, you may have kidney cancer in the worst case.
In any case, your doctor should examine you for symptoms.
Which doctor should I go to for kidney pain?
Diagnosis of kidney pain and kidney-related complaints requires an examination by a nephrologist . A nephrologist is a type of doctor who specializes in diseases and conditions that affect the kidneys. They treat conditions such as chronic kidney disease, kidney infections, and kidney failure.
How is kidney pain treated?
Which treatment the doctor prefers depends on the cause of the kidney pain. Some examples are:
Kidney stones often go away on their own. If this does not happen, the doctor can crush them using shock waves (shock wave lithotripsy). Rarely, kidney stones need to be surgically removed.
The doctor starts treatment with an appropriate antibiotic for bacterial urinary tract infections and inflammation of the kidneys . Kidney pain subsides rapidly. However, antibiotics should be taken as long as prescribed by the doctor. Otherwise, not all pathogens can be killed.
An acute kidney failure is an absolute emergency! It is treated with blood washing (dialysis) . Sometimes a kidney transplant may be required.
What is good for kidney pain?
Here are the things that are good for kidney pain:
1- hot compress
Warmth often helps relieve pain. Heat applications are a tried-and-tested aid for many acute pain problems that are quickly effective and provide relaxation.
Kidney pain is no exception here. You should warm the painful area with a warm washcloth, hot water bottle or red light lamp. This protects and relieves pain.
However, heat has another advantage: If kidney pain is triggered by kidney stones or a bladder infection, heat helps better eliminate stones or pathogens.
With targeted heat therapy, you can tackle several problems at once.
2- Drink lots of water
You should always drink enough fluids! You’ve probably heard that everyone needs a lot of fluids. While it’s difficult to drink enough water in everyday life, it can be dangerous because it can encourage kidney stone formation.
Stones can form if you drink too little for a long time, stay sedentary, or eat an unhealthy diet.
Examples of a wrong diet in terms of kidneys; consuming only dairy products or eating more animal protein than meat. Quantity plays a very important role.
When you have kidney stones, you should not forget to seek medical help. In many cases, kidney stones lead to extremely painful kidney colic . Above a certain size, kidney stones can block your ureters.
Even if you already have kidney pain, you should drink as much water as possible. Special kidney and bladder teas are especially recommended. You can find them in pharmacies and many supermarkets.
3- Flush the kidneys naturally
Drinking dandelion tea is equivalent to flushing the kidneys naturally. Because dandelion is a diuretic, it is an ideal tool for detoxifying or rinsing the kidneys.
Another proven home remedy for kidney pain is parsley . This medicinal plant is also diuretic, anti-inflammatory and can be brewed as a tea.
In addition, nettle tea has proven itself for kidney pain.
4- Fruits and vegetables that are good for kidney pain
Sage is considered a natural pain reliever and is therefore also suitable for kidney pain: Sage has a relaxing effect and relaxes your body, so lower back pain can be relieved naturally.
Fresh lemon juice can help dissolve kidney stones, especially for mild kidney pain.
Kidneys can also be cleaned with watermelon seeds . Kidney stones that cause pain can be removed from the body with watermelon seeds. These have a diuretic effect and can remove stored toxins.
Celery seeds are also a diuretic home remedy that can relieve kidney infections and lower back pain.
Cabbage is also a good home remedy for symptoms in the kidney area. To do this, fresh cabbage leaves are crushed and soaked in boiling water. Wrap the warm cabbage leaves in a cotton cloth and place this wrapper over the kidney area on the back. If necessary, reheat briefly in the oven and repeat the process.
Mustard plaster can achieve the same effect. If the pain in the kidneys extends to the lumbar region, this simple home remedy is an effective way to relieve the symptoms.
For this, 80 grams of mustard seeds and 300 grams of flour with protein are turned into a paste. Gently rub the back of the kidney with it to protect the skin. Then apply mustard plaster and leave it there for about 30 minutes. Then wash it off with lukewarm water.
Banana is also considered a healing fruit for kidney complaints, but it is still useful to consult your doctor. Our article on the benefits of bananas may interest you.