Tag Archives: Calcium

Straight, No Chaser: Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

In the emergency room setting, women are vicious when it comes to how men handle pain. It’s really humorous to see the female nurses’ attitudes change when a large or otherwise studly man crumbles at the notion of receiving an injection or having an IV line started. I’m pretty comfortable saying without fear of being biased that women in general hold the upper hand on men in the pain game. As only a few thousand of them have told me over the years, “Until men start having babies, you’ll never experience what we go through and can tolerate.”

Actually, that’s not true, or at least the women who populate the emergency rooms I’ve frequented have started changing their stories. It appears that the pain of a kidney stone is on par with or greater than the pain of childbirth, according to a large majority of the female patients with whom I’ve discussed this.

Kidney stones are among a few diagnoses that an emergency physician can just walk into a room and diagnosis to a high degree of medical certainty within seconds. (Don’t try this at home, because it’s about more than just the pain.) Once you’ve had one, you’ll go out of your way to avoid another one, which is another way of saying you should avoid them in the first place. Here are some questions and answers about kidney stones to steer you away from getting them and toward treatment if you do.

 kidney_stone_s6_treatment

What are they and how do I get them?

Kidney stones are hard, solid particles that congregate in the kidney and proceed down the urinary system with the intention of being eliminated through your urine. Too often (meaning even once) they become lodged somewhere along the way. It’s amazing how much trouble they cause, given their size. The overwhelming majority of them are smaller than the blacks in the center of your eyes (your pupils).

There is a pretty impressive variety of ways that someone can get stones, but here are some simple considerations that increase the probability of getting a kidney stone.

  • You have a family history of kidney stones.
  • You have frequent and recurrent urinary tract (“bladder”) infections.
  • You have an existing blockage of your urinary tract.
  • You have various medical conditions that alter substances in your urine. (Stones are most often causes by excessively high levels of calcium, oxalate and phosphorous in your urine. These substances aren’t likely to cause problems at regular levels. Conditions that increase these levels increase the risk of stones.)
  • You eat certain foods that are high in sodium or animal protein.
  • You are obese or are gaining weight.
  • You don’t drink enough fluid.
  • You take certain medication (those that increase those substances mentioned earlier).

kidney-stone-pain-areas

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms may not be present, depending on the size of the stone. However, when symptoms are present, they’re typically severe.

  • You may have a sharp pain in (most typically) one side of your back or abdomen, between the level of your chest and hips.
  • You may have blood in your urine.
  • You may have pain while urinating.
  • You may nausea and vomiting associated with these pains.

 kidney-stone

How are they treated?

There’s no uniform treatment for kidney stones. In the short-term (i.e., a presentation to your doctor’s office or an emergency room), your pain and vomiting will be addressed. Dependent on the size and composition of your stones, or based on the effects the stones are having on your body, the stones may be broken up or removed by a specialist.

How are they prevented?

Knowing your risks and making adjustments in your diet are important steps to preventing and avoiding kidney stones. Staying hydrated is perhaps the one step you can take most easily to get the biggest yield.

What else do you want us to know?

If you have a history of kidney stones or certain other conditions (e.g., migraines and certain types of abdominal pain), you run the risk of becoming comfortable (figuratively speaking) with your symptoms. What I mean by this is sometimes the diagnosis of kidney stones is incorrect, even if you have a history of kidney stones. Unfortunately, in this example, the consequences can be deadly. More to follow…

Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.

Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.

Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.

Copyright © 2017 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

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Filed under Genital/Urinary

Straight, No Chaser: Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

In the emergency room setting, women are vicious when it comes to how men handle pain. It’s really humorous to see the female nurses’ attitudes change when a large or otherwise studly man crumbles at the notion of receiving an injection or having an IV line started. I’m pretty comfortable saying without fear of being biased that women in general hold the upper hand on men in the pain game. As only a few thousand of them have told me over the years, “Until men start having babies, you’ll never experience what we go through and can tolerate.”

Actually, that’s not true, or at least the women who populate the emergency rooms I’ve frequented have started changing their stories. It appears that the pain of a kidney stone is on par with or greater than the pain of childbirth, according to a large majority of the female patients with whom I’ve discussed this.

Kidney stones are among a few diagnoses that an emergency physician can just walk into a room and diagnosis to a high degree of medical certainty within seconds. (Don’t try this at home, because it’s about more than just the pain.) Once you’ve had one, you’ll go out of your way to avoid another one, which is another way of saying you should avoid them in the first place. Here are some questions and answers about kidney stones to steer you away from getting them and toward treatment if you do.

 kidney_stone_s6_treatment

What are they and how do I get them?

Kidney stones are hard, solid particles that congregate in the kidney and proceed down the urinary system with the intention of being eliminated through your urine. Too often (meaning even once) they become lodged somewhere along the way. It’s amazing how much trouble they cause, given their size. The overwhelming majority of them are smaller than the blacks in the center of your eyes (your pupils).

There is a pretty impressive variety of ways that someone can get stones, but here are some simple considerations that increase the probability of getting a kidney stone.

  • You have a family history of kidney stones.
  • You have frequent and recurrent urinary tract (“bladder”) infections.
  • You have an existing blockage of your urinary tract.
  • You have various medical conditions that alter substances in your urine. (Stones are most often causes by excessively high levels of calcium, oxalate and phosphorous in your urine. These substances aren’t likely to cause problems at regular levels. Conditions that increase these levels increase the risk of stones.)
  • You eat certain foods that are high in sodium or animal protein.
  • You are obese or are gaining weight.
  • You don’t drink enough fluid.
  • You take certain medication (those that increase those substances mentioned earlier).

kidney-stone-pain-areas

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms may not be present, depending on the size of the stone. However, when symptoms are present, they’re typically severe.

  • You may have a sharp pain in (most typically) one side of your back or abdomen, between the level of your chest and hips.
  • You may have blood in your urine.
  • You may have pain while urinating.
  • You may nausea and vomiting associated with these pains.

 kidney-stone

How are they treated?

There’s no uniform treatment for kidney stones. In the short-term (i.e., a presentation to your doctor’s office or an emergency room), your pain and vomiting will be addressed. Dependent on the size and composition of your stones, or based on the effects the stones are having on your body, the stones may be broken up or removed by a specialist.

How are they prevented?

Knowing your risks and making adjustments in your diet are important steps to preventing and avoiding kidney stones. Staying hydrated is perhaps the one step you can take most easily to get the biggest yield.

What else do you want us to know?

If you have a history of kidney stones or certain other conditions (e.g., migraines and certain types of abdominal pain), you run the risk of becoming comfortable (figuratively speaking) with your symptoms. What I mean by this is sometimes the diagnosis of kidney stones is incorrect, even if you have a history of kidney stones. Unfortunately, in this example, the consequences can be deadly. More to follow…

Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.

Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.

Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.

Copyright © 2016 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Comments Off on Straight, No Chaser: Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Filed under Genital/Urinary

Straight, No Chaser: Lactose Intolerance – It’s Explosive!

lactose_intolerance

So I’m at dinner with a group of friends, and somehow the topic gets to lactose intolerance. For 15 minutes. They were really into it. At dinner! You know what it is. Everyone seemingly knows someone who has it, even if (hopefully) you aren’t reminded of it too often. Lactose intolerance is a state where you simply have difficulty digesting lactose (one of the sugars we consume, most notably in milk and other dairy products) because of a deficiency in the enzyme that breaks it down, called lactase. Lactose intolerance occurs more often in Black, Asian, Hispanic and Native Americans, but that doesn’t mean your body read that book.

So by now you may be thinking “What is there to discuss besides the odoriferous emanations produced?” (In case you didn’t get the reference that’s from an old Right Guard commercial featuring Charles Barkley.) Well, the biggest concern from a health standpoint is to ensure you’re still getting enough calcium to keep your bones strong and enough Vitamin D. Here are 3 sets of practical facts to help you get through it all.

lactose-intolerance-400w-green

1. If you’re lactose intolerant, that doesn’t mean you’re allergic to dairy products.

  • This is an important distinction. There’s nothing immediately life-threatening about the ingestion of dairy products if you’re lactose intolerant, as there might be if you were allergic. Just be aware of the cramping, bloating, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and gas that may ensue.

2. If you’re lactose intolerant, that doesn’t mean you can’t necessarily have any dairy or won’t ever be able to have dairy.

  • Lactose intolerance occurs in many shades of grey. Some people get worse with age; others get better as they learn to work around it. Some develop lactose intolerance at birth, others later in life, and others develop it after injury or surgery to the small intestine (which is where lactase is normally produced). Some can ingest small amounts of certain products without symptoms. In the privacy of your own surroundings, you should discover for yourself if you’re affected every time you have daily or whether or not only large amounts of certain products cause symptoms (e.g. Try not to eat the entire gallon of ice cream.). You should also gauge your response to daily after taking various lactase-containing supplements.

3. If you’re lactose intolerant, you still can get adequate calcium. Here’s a few suggestions.

  • Soy and rice products have exploded (in a different way) on the market. Consider soy milk, soybeans and tofu.
  • Many juice, bread and cereal makers have taken to providing calcium.
  • Some fruits and veggies are great sources. Consider broccoli, collard and turnip greens, kale, okra, pinto beans, rhubarb, and spinach. Oranges are a good source of calcium.
  • Other great foods include almonds, salmon, sardines and tuna.

lactose-intolerance

If you have any questions or comments (I’m sure you’re busting at the gut to discuss this topic), let ’em rip…

Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, AmazonBarnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.

Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook @ SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.

Copyright © 2015 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Comments Off on Straight, No Chaser: Lactose Intolerance – It’s Explosive!

Filed under General Health and Wellness

Straight, No Chaser: Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

In the ER setting, women are vicious when it comes to how men handle pain. It’s really humorous to see the female nurses’ attitudes change when a large or otherwise studly man crumbles at the notion of receiving an injection or having an IV line started. I’m pretty comfortable saying without fear of being biased that women in general hold the upper hand on men in the pain game. As only a few thousand of them have told me over the years, “Until men start having babies, you’ll never experience what we go through and can tolerate.”

Actually, that’s not true, or at least the women who populate the emergency rooms I’ve frequented have started changing their stories. It appears that the pain of a kidney stone is on par with or greater than the pain of childbirth, according to a large majority of the female patients with whom I’ve discussed this.

Kidney stones are among a few diagnoses that an emergency physician can just walk into a room and diagnosis to a high degree of medical certainty within seconds. (Don’t try this at home, because it’s about more than just the pain.) Once you’ve had one, you’ll go out of your way to avoid another one, which is another way of saying you should avoid them in the first place. Here are some questions and answers about kidney stones to steer you away from getting them and toward treatment if you do.

 kidney_stone_s6_treatment

What are they and how do I get them?

Kidney stones are hard, solid particles that congregate in the kidney and proceed down the urinary system with the intention of being eliminated through your urine. Too often (meaning even once) they become lodged somewhere along the way. It’s amazing how much trouble they cause, given their size. The overwhelming majority of them are smaller than the blacks in the center of your eyes (your pupils).

There is a pretty impressive variety of ways that someone can get stones, but here are some simple considerations that increase the probability of getting a kidney stone.

  • You have a family history of kidney stones.
  • You have frequent and recurrent urinary tract (“bladder”) infections.
  • You have an existing blockage of your urinary tract.
  • You have various medical conditions that alter substances in your urine. (Stones are most often causes by excessively high levels of calcium, oxalate and phosphorous in your urine. These substances aren’t likely to cause problems at regular levels. Conditions that increase these levels increase the risk of stones.)
  • You eat certain foods that are high in sodium or animal protein.
  • You are obese or are gaining weight.
  • You don’t drink enough fluid.
  • You take certain medication (those that increase those substances mentioned earlier).

kidney-stone-pain-areas

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms may not be present, depending on the size of the stone. However, when symptoms are present, they’re typically severe.

  • You may have a sharp pain in (most typically) one side of your back or abdomen, between the level of your chest and hips.
  • You may have blood in your urine.
  • You may have pain while urinating.
  • You may nausea and vomiting associated with these pains.

 kidney-stone

How are they treated?

There’s no uniform treatment for kidney stones. In the short-term (i.e., a presentation to your doctor’s office or an emergency room), your pain and vomiting will be addressed. Dependent on the size and composition of your stones, or based on the effects the stones are having on your body, the stones may be broken up or removed by a specialist.

How are they prevented?

Knowing your risks and making adjustments in your diet are important steps to preventing and avoiding kidney stones. Staying hydrated is perhaps the one step you can take most easily to get the biggest yield.

What else do you want us to know?

If you have a history of kidney stones or certain other conditions (e.g., migraines and certain types of abdominal pain), you run the risk of becoming comfortable (figuratively speaking) with your symptoms. What I mean by this is sometimes the diagnosis of kidney stones is incorrect, even if you have a history of kidney stones. Unfortunately, in this example, the consequences can be deadly. More to follow…

Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of 844-SMA-TALK and http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA). Enjoy some of our favorite posts and frequently asked questions as well as a daily note explaining the benefits of SMA membership. Please share our page with your Friends on WordPress, on Facebook at SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.

Copyright © 2014 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Comments Off on Straight, No Chaser: Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)

Filed under Genital/Urinary

Straight, No Chaser: Lactose Intolerance – It’s Explosive!

lactose-intolerance

So I’m at dinner with a group of friends, and somehow the topic gets to lactose intolerance. For 15 minutes. They were really into it. At dinner! You know what it is. Everyone seemingly knows someone who has it, even if (hopefully) you aren’t reminded of it too often. Lactose intolerance is a state where you simply have difficulty digesting lactose (one of the sugars we consume, most notably in milk and other dairy products) because of a deficiency in the enzyme that breaks it down, called lactase. Lactose intolerance occurs more often in Black, Asian, Hispanic and Native Americans, but that doesn’t mean your body read that book.

So by now you may be thinking “What is there to discuss besides the odoriferous emanations produced?” (In case you didn’t get the reference that’s from an old Right Guard commercial featuring Charles Barkley.) Well, the biggest concern from a health standpoint is to ensure you’re still getting enough calcium to keep your bones strong and enough Vitamin D. Here are 3 sets of practical facts to help you get through it all.

1. If you’re lactose intolerant, that doesn’t mean you’re allergic to dairy products.

  • This is an important distinction. There’s nothing immediately life-threatening about the ingestion of dairy products if you’re lactose intolerant, as there might be if you were allergic. Just be aware of the cramping, bloating, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and gas that may ensue.

2. If you’re lactose intolerant, that doesn’t mean you can’t necessarily have any dairy or won’t ever be able to have dairy.

  • Lactose intolerance occurs in many shades of grey. Some people get worse with age; others get better as they learn to work around it. Some develop lactose intolerance at birth, others later in life, and others develop it after injury or surgery to the small intestine (which is where lactase is normally produced). Some can ingest small amounts of certain products without symptoms. In the privacy of your own surroundings, you should discover for yourself if you’re affected every time you have daily or whether or not only large amounts of certain products cause symptoms (e.g. Try not to eat the entire gallon of ice cream.). You should also gauge your response to daily after taking various lactase-containing supplements.

3. If you’re lactose intolerant, you still can get adequate calcium. Here’s a few suggestions.

  • Soy and rice products have exploded (in a different way) on the market. Consider soy milk, soybeans and tofu.
  • Many juice, bread and cereal makers have taken to providing calcium.
  • Some fruits and veggies are great sources. Consider broccoli, collard and turnip greens, kale, okra, pinto beans, rhubarb, and spinach. Oranges are a good source of calcium.
  • Other great foods include almonds, salmon, sardines and tuna.

If you have any questions or comments (I’m sure you’re busting at the gut to discuss this topic), let ’em rip…

3 Comments

Filed under Health Prevention, Medical Treatment