What are symptoms and signs are associated with kidney pain?
Symptoms associated with kidney pain (also termed renal or flank pain) are discomfort (acute or chronic), aches, or sharp pain that occurs in the back between approximately the lowest rib and the buttock. Depending on the cause of the pain, it may radiate down the flank to the groin or toward the abdominal area. Some individuals may develop symptoms and signs such as:
Other signs and symptoms that may occur if the kidney function is increasingly compromised are a
Depending on the underlying cause, kidney pain may occur on the left or right side. Sometimes it can occur on both sides of the back; traumatic kidney injury (kidney laceration) may cause the above symptoms, but mild damage may initially have no symptoms. Severe kidney lacerations can cause abnormal blood pressure and pulse, and shock.
Kidney pain itself is a symptom that may happen due to problems or diseases of the kidney or its associated structures, including the ureters or bladder. However, other diseases may mimic kidney pain, but are not actually due to the kidneys, for example,
- muscle strains in the back,
- spinal problems (fracture, abscesses),
- rib pain,
- retroperitoneal fibrosis,
- aortic abdominal aneurysm,
- gynecological problems, and
- many other causes.
Although kidney pain often occurs on one side of the back, it can occur on both sides at the same time and may radiate toward the abdomen or groin.
Pain that occurs suddenly, is sharp, severe, and may increase and decrease in waves is often due kidney stones in the ureters of the kidneys. Pain caused by kidney stones is termed renal colic.