Why Do I Get Pain after Passing a Kidney Stone?

By Michael Adeyanju |
|5 min read

Many people experience a great deal of pain after passing a kidney stone, but this is a normal occurrence that doesn't necessarily need to be of great concern. Kidney stones themselves are simply a blockage made up of organic matter that forms in the kidney, as the name suggests. However, these simple little obstructions can cause a great deal of pain; some people describe the pain as being excruciating, while others might experience fainting or nausea as a side effect of the kidney stones lingering in their bodies.

So, why does it hurt to pass a kidney stone, and what can be done about the problem?

Why Does It Hurt after Passing a Kidney Stone?

While passing a kidney stone itself can be arguably the most painful part, it is undeniable that many people will experience ongoing discomfort after expelling the stone from their bodies as well. But why is this? Why do some people experience pain after a kidney stone passes from the body?

Kidney stones can consist of four primary combinations of chemicals: calcium oxalate, uric acid, struvite, and cystine, in order of rarity. Pain after passing kidney stone blockages of any of the four aforementioned types is relatively common. That being said, any discomfort should be carefully evaluated, just in case it is indicative of a greater problem.

So, what are the reasons that you could be experiencing pain after passing a kidney stone?

Big Kidney Stones

Arguably the most common reason for a kidney stone to cause lingering pain after it has passed is due to the stone's unusually large size. This can mean that the stone is unable to pass through the body entirely, and thus break up and leave smaller stones yet to be expelled. These "leftover" fragments of stones can cause pain after passing the kidney stone.

CT Scan Missed a Stone

Oftentimes, a patient suffering from kidney stones may not have just one stone, but perhaps two or three (or even more). CT scans are usually highly effective in determining this. However, they are not 100% accurate, which means some stones can be missed by the scan, and may leave the patient in pain for longer than expected.

Location of the Kidney Stone

Kidney stones that are found at the end of the kidney, instead of in the bladder, are often far more painful for patients and so will cause greater pain, both in the immediate present and in the future, after the stone has passed.

Obstructions of the Ureter

Unsurprisingly, when the ureter gets fully obstructed by a kidney stone that is stubborn and unwilling to be passed easily, a great deal of pain can be caused. This type of pain will usually pass when the stone eventually dislodges itself, but it is still an extremely unpleasant experience to have to endure. For more persistently lodged stones, an obstructed ureter can also make urinating difficult, thereby causing discomfort due to a buildup of urine in the body too.

How to Treat Kidney Stones

In general, kidney stones will pass on their own, without the need for extra medical intervention. However, there are a number of ways that you can try to reduce the pain associated with a kidney stone. For more persistent and serious cases, medical intervention by a doctor may be needed to break up the kidney stone. But what methods could you use to help get over the pain of kidney stones?

Drink Plenty

One of the easiest home remedies for kidney stones is to simply increase the amount of fluids that you are drinking. This will potentially help to dissolve the stone. For more persistent kidney stones, adding a bit of lemon juice to water may also be beneficial, especially if you prefer water with a little bit more flavor.

Try Celery Juice

Have you ever tried celery juice? The chances are this may not be your go-to drink of choice but celery is well known to have antispasmodic properties. This can help to reduce the pain associated with tissue that is in spasm after the kidney stone has passed, so it could be a good way of relieving a little of the pain.

Make Some Green Tea

Green tea is well known for its potent properties, and it may offer benefits for people suffering from kidney stones, too! Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties and can also act as a mild pain reliever. It could be added to your morning routine for preventing kidney stones, or easing the effects of existing stones.

Get Medicinal Help

If you have persistent kidney stones, then the best way is to simply get medical assistance. Ibuprofen, aspirin, and other such over-the-counter painkillers are effective for helping to ease the pain associated with kidney stones. Motrin is a non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drug that can also be beneficial. Always check with your doctor before taking any medication.

In Summary

If you are struggling with pain after passing kidney stone buildups, then there are a number of different herbal and medicinal remedies that you could try. Always be aware, though, that persistent pain after passing a stone could be indicative of other problems, so be sure to check with your doctor if you are concerned!



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