You wake up in the middle of the night feverish, your lower back hurts, and your abdomen is painfully swollen and tender. What’s even worse is that when you get up to use the bathroom, it’s so painful to urinate that you think you might die.
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You, my friend, are likely one in 10-percent of North Americans with a kidney stone.
This excruciating condition occurs when a small speck of calcium (from your urine) forms in the kidney or the ureter (the passageway from your kidney to your bladder) and more minerals stick to it to form a tiny stone that many patients describe as so terrible, it’s “more agonizing than giving birth.”
If you have a kidney stone, you’ll likely know it soon enough. However, there are several early warning signs that can alert you to the formation of a stone early on…
1. Frequent Urination
One of the earliest and most common warning signs that you may have kidney stones is a sudden and unexplained increase in the frequency and urgency of urination. You will notice an intense need to urinate, even when you haven’t been drinking unusually large quantities of fluid.