Kidney pain has a variety of causes and symptoms. Infection, injury, trauma, bleeding disorders, kidney stones, and less common conditions may lead to kidney pain. Symptoms associated with kidney pain may include fever, vomiting, nausea, flank pain, and painful urination. Treatment of kidney pain depends on the cause of the pain. Read more: Kidney Pain: Symptoms, Treatment, and Causes Article
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Kidney Stones: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment
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Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Symptoms, Diagnosis, Medication
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Bladder Infections: UTI Causes, Symptoms, Treatments
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Kidney Disease Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ
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Urinary Tract Infection Quiz
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Picture of Kidney Stone Crystal
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Picture of Kidney Stone Diagnosis
The diagnosis of kidney stones is suspected by the typical pattern of symptoms when other possible causes of the abdominal or...
Picture of Kidney Stone
A stone in the kidney (or lower down in the urinary tract). See a picture of Kidney Stone and learn more about the health topic.
Picture of Kidneys
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Related Disease Conditions
Kidney (Renal) Failure
Kidney failure can occur from an acute event or a chronic condition or disease. Prerenal kidney failure is caused by blood loss, dehydration, or medication. Some of the renal causes of kidney failure include sepsis, medications, rhabdomyolysis, multiple myeloma, and acute glomerulonephritis. Post renal causes of kidney failure include bladder obstruction, prostate problems, tumors, or kidney stones.Treatment options included diet, medications, or dialysis.
The First Signs of Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis)
Kidney stones are solid masses of crystalline material that form in the kidneys. Symptoms of kidney stones can include pain, nausea, vomiting, and even fever and chills. Kidney stones are diagnosed via CT scans and specialized X-rays. Treatment of kidney stones involves drinking lots of fluids and taking over-the-counter pain medications to medical intervention including prescription medications, lithotripsy, and sometimes even surgery.
Shingles, or herpes zoster, is a painful rash caused by the varicella zoster virus. Other shingles symptoms include headache, fever, nausea, and body aches. Treatment focuses on pain management and shortening the duration of the illness with antiviral medications.
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million people in the US have hypertension (1 in 3 adults), and only half of them are able to manage it. Many people do not know that they have high blood pressure because it often has no has no warning signs or symptoms. Systolic and diastolic are the two readings in which blood pressure is measured. The American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure in 2017. The guidelines now state that blood normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. If either one of those numbers is higher, you have high blood pressure. The American Academy of Cardiology defines high blood pressure slightly differently. The AAC considers 130/80 mm Hg. or greater (either number) stage 1 hypertension. Stage 2 hypertension is considered 140/90 mm Hg. or greater. If you have high blood pressure you are at risk of developing life threatening diseases like stroke and heart attack.REFERENCE: CDC. High Blood Pressure. Updated: Nov 13, 2017.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the bladder, kidneys, ureters, or urethra. E. coli, a type of bacteria that lives in the bowel and near the anus, causes most UTIs. UTI symptoms include pain, abdominal pain, mild fever, urinary urgency and frequency. Treatment involves a course of antibiotics.
What Level of BUN Indicates Kidney Failure?
Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) is one of the parameters measured to ascertain kidney function. BUN indicates the urea nitrogen produced in the body during protein breakdown. There is no definite value of BUN that would diagnose kidney failure.
What Causes Swollen Feet and Swollen Ankles?
Swollen ankles and swollen feet is a symptom of an underlying disease or condition such as edema, medications, pregnancy, injuries, diseases, infections, lymphedema, or blood clots.
Restless Leg Syndrome
Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is a common cause for painful legs that typically eases with motion, and becomes worse and more noticeable at rest. This characteristic nighttime worsening can frequently lead to insomnia. Treatment of the symptoms of restless leg syndrome is generally with medication as well as treating any underlying condition causing restless leg syndrome.
What Are the 5 Stages of Chronic Kidney Disease?
The doctor will take your complete medical history along with your family history, such as if anyone in your family has or had diabetes, whether you are on any medications (that can cause kidney damage), and so on. They will perform a thorough physical examination to see if you have any signs or symptoms of CKD.
Symptoms of 12 Serious Diseases and Health Problems
Learn how to recognize early warning signs and symptoms of serious diseases and health problems, for example, chronic cough, headache, chest pain, nausea, stool color or consistency changes, heartburn, skin moles, anxiety, nightmares, suicidal thoughts, hallucinations, delusions, lightheadedness, night sweats, eye problems, confusion, depression, severe pelvic or abdominal pain, unusual vaginal discharge, and nipple changes. The symptoms and signs of serious health problems can be caused by strokes, heart attacks, cancers, reproductive problems in females (for example, cancers, fibroids, endometriosis, ovarian cysts, and sexually transmitted diseases or STDs), breast problems (for example, breast cancer and non-cancer related diseases), lung diseases (for example, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD, lung cancer, emphysema, and asthma), stomach or digestive diseases (for example, cancers, gallbladder, liver, and pancreatic diseases, ulcerative colitis, or Crohn's disease), bladder problems (for example, urinary incontinence, and kidney infections), skin cancer, muscle and joint problems, emotional problems or mental illness (for example, postpartum depression, major depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), mania, and schizophrenia), and headache disorders (for example, migraines, or "the worst headache of your life), and eating disorders and weight problems (for example, anorexia or bulimia).
Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)
Kidney infection (pyelonephritis) usually is caused by E. coli and other bacteria that have spread from the bladder from a UTI (urinary tract infection), poor hygiene, sexual intercourse, pregnancy, catheter, cystoscope exam, surgery, kidney stones, or prostate enlargement. Symptoms of kidney infection include back pain, frequent urination, pain during urination, fever, and or pus or blood in the urine. Kidney infection can be cured with antibiotic treatment. Cranberry juice may prevent UTIs, but that hasn’t been proven in all research studies.
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS)
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) is a disease transmitted by rodents. Symptoms include fever and muscle pain. HPS can be prevented by sealing up rodent entry holes, trapping rats and mice with an appropriate snap trap, and cleaning up rodent food sources.
Pain management and treatment can be simple or complex, according to its cause. There are two basic types of pain, nociceptive pain and neuropathic pain. Some causes of neuropathic pain include: complex regional pain syndrome, interstitial cystitis, and irritable bowel syndrome. There are a variety of methods to treat chronic pain, which are dependant on the type of pain experienced.
How Do I Know if My Back Pain Is Kidney Related?
The pain of kidney infection may be felt on the sides (flanks) and the back. Unlike the classical back pain due to muscle or bone involvement, which typically affects the lower back, kidney pain is felt higher up and at a greater depth.
Diabetic Ketoacidosis (Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Complications)
Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a complication of type 1 diabetes that is life threatening. If a person thinks they may have diabetic ketoacidosis they should seek medical care immediately. Diabetic ketoacidosis happens when a person's insulin levels in the blood become dangerously low. Symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis include dehydration, abdominal pain, confusion, and nausea and vomiting. Diabetic ketoacidosis needs medical treatment. It cannot be treated at home.
What Are the Signs That Something Is Wrong With My Kidneys?
Most of the signs of kidney diseases are unnoticed, ignored, or appear very late in the disease. Over 37 million American adults have kidney diseases, and most are not aware of it.
Urinary Tract Infections in Children
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common in children. Symptoms and signs include fever and abdominal pain. Associated symptoms and signs include flank pain, vomiting, and blood in the urine. Treatment for a UTI involves antibiotic therapy.
Kidney Pain vs. Back Pain
The signs and symptoms of kidney pain and back pain depend upon the underlying cause. Doctors may use blood tests, X-rays, CT, and/or MRI to diagnose kidney pain and back pain. Treatment may include rest, ice, stretching, muscle strengthening, and pain-relieving medications.
Pelvic Pain (in Women and Men)
Pelvic pain is described as pain, usually in the lower pelvic area. Causes of acute and chronic pelvic pain in women include endometriosis, ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, menstrual cramps, ovarian cysts, tumors, or fibroids, ovulation, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or congestion syndrome, vulva pain, and rarely cancer. Pelvic pain during pregnancy may be caused by miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy (tubal pregnancy), preterm or premature labor, and placental abruption. Causes of pelvic pain in men include prostate problems, testicular pain, and groin pain. Causes of pelvic pain in men and women include kidney stones, appendicitis, UTIs, IBD, and STDs. Signs and symptoms associated with pelvic pain depend on the cause, but man include pain during or after sexual intercourse, abdominal pain, distension, and tenderness, diarrhea, constipation, vaginal discharge or bleeding, blood, pus, in the urine, cloudy urine, blood in the stool, stool color changes, and low back pain. The cause of pelvic pain is diagnosed by a physical exam, blood tests, and imaging procedures. Treatment for pelvic pain depends on the cause.
Can a Kidney Infection Cause Back Pain?
Many people are affected by lower back pain. Learn how to tell if lower back pain is due to a kidney infection or the result of other causes.
Hypertensive Kidney Disease
High blood pressure can damage the kidneys and is one of the leading causes of kidney failure (end-stage renal kidney disease). Kidney damage, like hypertension, can be unnoticeable and detected only through medical tests. If you have kidney disease, you should control your blood pressure. Other treatment options include prescription medications.
What Happens When You Get Shingles When Pregnant?
Becoming infected with chickenpox during pregnancy could cause birth defects in your unborn child. Likewise, shingles could also cause problems for your unborn child. If you are pregnant and haven't had chickenpox, avoid exposure to infected people. Zostavax, the shingles vaccine, can reduce the incidence of shingles by half. Women should wait at least three months after receiving the vaccine before trying to get pregnant.
Sex, Urinary, and Bladder Problems of Diabetes
Having diabetes can mean early onset and increased severity of bladder symptoms (urinary incontinence and urinary tract infections) and changes in sexual function. Men may have erectile dysfunction; and women may have problems with sexual response and vaginal lubrication. Keep your diabetes under control, and you can lower your risk of sexual and urologic problems.
Hyperparathyroidism is a disorder of the parathyroid glands. There are two types of hyperparathyroidism, primary and secondary. When the parathyroid glands produce too much hormone, hyperparathyroidism is the resulting condition. Most cases of hyperparathyroidism have no evident cause. Signs and symptoms of hyperparathyroidism include fatigue, weakness, depression, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, constipation, or confusion. Increased calcium and phosphorous excretion may cause kidney stones. The main treatment of hyperparathyroidism is surgery (parathyroidectomy).
How Do I Get Rid of a Cyst on My Kidney?
Learn what medical treatments can help get rid of your kidney cysts and speed up your recovery.
There are several types of kidney cancer, including renal cell cancer (renal adenocarcinoma or hypernephroma), transitional cell carcinoma, and Wilms tumor. Symptoms of kidney cancer include blood in the urine, an abdominal lump or mass, chronic pain in the side, and tiredness. Treatment of kidney cancer -- which may include surgery, arterial embolization, radiation therapy, biological therapy or chemotherapy -- depends upon the stage of the disease and the patient's overall health.
Granulomatosis With Polyangiitis
Granulomatosis with polyangiitis is a condition that usually affects young or middle-aged adults, is an inflammation of the arteries supplying blood to the sinuses, lungs, and kidneys. Symptoms of granulomatosis with polyangiitis include bloody sputum, fatigue, weight loss, joint pain, sinusitis, shortness of breath, and fever. Granulomatosis with polyangiitis may be fatal within months without treatment. Treatment aims to stop inflammation with high doses of prednisone and cyclophosphamide.
Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD), ARPKD, and ADPKD
Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) is characterized by numerous cysts in the kidneys. Polycystic kidney disease is a genetic disorder. There are two major inherited forms of PKD, autosomal dominant PKD, and autosomal recessive PKD. Symptoms include headaches, urinary tract infections, blood in the urine, liver and pancreatic cysts, abnormal heart valves, high blood pressure, kidney stones, aneurysms, and diverticulosis. Diagnosis of PKD is generally with ultrasound, CT or MRI scan. There is no cure for PKD, so treatment of symptoms is usually the general protocol.
Why Are Calcium Levels Low in Renal Failure?
Renal failure usually causes calcium imbalance. During renal failure, the kidneys may no longer filter out extra phosphorus and remove it from the body or from urine. Over time, phosphorus may increase in the blood. Calcium and phosphorous usually keep each other in check.
How Long Does it Take to Pass a Kidney Stone?
What are kidney stones and what do they feel like? Learn the signs of kidney stones and what to do if you have kidney stone pain.
Diabetes and Kidney Disease
In the United States diabetes is the most common cause of kidney failure. High blood pressure and high levels of blood glucose increase the risk that a person with diabetes will eventually progress to kidney failure. Kidney disease in people with diabetes develops over the course of many years. albumin and eGFR are two key markers for kidney disease in people with diabetes. Controlling high blood pressure, blood pressure medications, a moderate protein diet, and compliant management of blood glucose can slow the progression of kidney disease. For those patients who's kidneys eventually fail, dialysis or kidney transplantation is the only option.
Kidney Dysplasia: In Infants and Children
Kidney dysplasia is a condition in which one or both of a baby's kidneys do not develop normally. In kidney dysplasia, cysts replace normal kidney tissue. Signs of kidney dysplasia include enlarged kidneys and, rarely, high blood pressure. A child with kidney dysplasia may not have any symptoms. Genes and maternal exposure to certain drugs may cause kidney dysplasia. Regular checkups should include blood pressure measurements, kidney function tests, and urine testing for protein.
Is Kidney Cancer Curable?
Kidney cancer is an uncontrolled division of cells (cancer) that begins in the kidney. How curable is a particular cancer depends on its stage, its cell type, and the stage at which it is diagnosed.
How Do You Know If You Have a Kidney Infection?
A kidney infection is a potentially life-threatening illness if left untreated. Learn the signs of a kidney infection, what causes it, how doctors diagnose it, and what you can do to treat a kidney infection.
Can a UTI Become a Kidney Infection?
What Is the Difference Between Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) and Kidney Infections and Can a UTI become a kidney infection? Learn the symptoms of UTIs and kidney infections to better treat these conditions.
How Can I Improve My Kidney Health? Nine Tips
Kidneys are vital organs involved in performing several important functions in the body. Almost a third of the adults in the United States are at risk of developing kidney diseases. People who are on long-term medications or suffering from conditions such as diabetes and hypertension have a higher risk of kidney diseases.
How Can You Tell if You Have a Kidney Infection?
Kidney infection or pyelonephritis is a serious medical condition in which there is an infection of one or both the kidneys.
Local ResourcesFind a local Gastroenterologist in your town
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Swollen Ankles and/or Swollen Feet
- Frequent Urination
- Blood in Urine
- Kidney Stone
- Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)
- How to Choose a Doctor
- Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)
- Kidney Cancer
- Doctor: Checklist to Take To Your Doctor's Appointment
- Doctor: Getting the Most from Your Doctor's Appointment
Medications & Supplements
- ACE Inhibitors (Side Effects, List of Names, Uses, and Dosage)
- acetaminophen (Tylenol, Tylenol Arthritis Pain, Tylenol Ext, Little Fevers Children's Fever/Pain)
- Oxycodone for Pain (OxyContin, Roxicodone, Oxecta, Oxaydo, Xtampza ER, Roxybond)
- codeine (for Pain)
- Dilaudid vs. Percocet for Pain
- Pain Medications (Narcotics)
- Oxycodone vs. Hydrocodone
- ketorolac (Toradol)
- Percocet (oxycodone and acetaminophen, Roxicet, Tylox, Oxycet)
- ketorolac - injection, Toradol
- Tramadol (Ultram) Side Effects
- levocarnitine (Carnitor)
- citric acid/sodium citrate
- calcitriol (Rocaltrol)
- hydrocodone (Zohydro ER)
- Fotivda (tivozanib)
- Monoferric (ferric derisomaltose)
- Auryxia (ferric citrate)
- Feraheme (ferumoxytol injection)
- NephrAmine (essential amino acid)
- Veltassa (patiromer)
- Jynarque (tolvaptan)
- Injectafer (ferric carboxymaltose)
- Oxlumo (lumasiran)
- Viltepso (viltolarsen)
Prevention & Wellness
- COVID May Worsen Kidney Injury, Study Finds
- What Happens to Your Kidneys as You Age?
- Uninsured Kidney Patients Often End Up in ERs
- Kidney Injury on the Rise in Women Hospitalized During Pregnancy
- New Tool Predicts Odds of Kidney Disease
- Supplements Don't Prevent Kidney Disease in Type 2 Diabetics
- Prescription Opioids Linked to Poor Outcomes in Kidney Patients
- Half of Older Dialysis Patients Die Within a Year, Study Finds
- Health Tip: Understanding Kidney Stones
- Itchy Skin Common Alongside Kidney Disease
- Hydrate Right, Your Kidneys Will Thank You
- Are Scientists Closer to Growing Made-to-Order Kidneys?
- Kidney Disease More Deadly for Men
- Climate Change Ups Heat Deaths, Especially Among Elderly: Report
- Household Chemicals Tied to Kidney Problems
- Coffee May Have Another Perk for Kidney Patients
- Too Many Kidney Disease Patients in the Dark About Diet
- Melania Trump Treated for Benign Kidney Condition
- First Death Reported in E. Coli Outbreak Tied to Romaine Lettuce
- Marijuana Doesn't Seem to Harm the Kidneys
- Learning Problems May Accompany Kidney Disease
- Study Counters Notion That Heart Surgery Poses More Kidney Risks to Women
- Kidney Patients Without Online Access Face Additional Burden
- Kidney Problems Linked to Brain Disorders: Study
- Many Dialysis Patients Ill-Prepared for Emergencies, Study Says
- Gene Test May Spot Which Kidney Transplants More Likely to Fail
- Study Finds Kidney Stones Linked to Weakened Bones
- NephroCheck Test Approved to Predict Kidney Injury Risk
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