Types of Kidney Stones
There are four main types of kidney stones.
Nearly 80 out of 100 kidney stones (80%) are made of calcium compounds, especially calcium oxalate.1 Calcium phosphate and other minerals also may be present. Conditions that cause high calcium levels in the body, such as hyperparathyroidism, increase the risk of calcium stones. High levels of oxalate also increase the risk for calcium stones.
Certain medicines may prevent calcium stones.
Uric acid stones
Certain medicines may prevent or dissolve uric acid stones.
About 10 to 15 out of 100 kidney stones (10% to 15%) are struvite stones.1 They can also be called infection stones if they occur with kidney or urinary tract infections (UTIs). These types of kidney stones sometimes are also called staghorn calculi if they grow large enough.
Struvite stones can be serious, because they are often large stones and may occur with an infection. Medical treatment, including antibiotics and removal of the stone, is usually needed for struvite stones. Women are affected more than men because of their higher risk of urinary tract infections.
Less than 1% of kidney stones (less than 1 out of 100) are made of a chemical called cystine.1 Cystine stones are more likely to develop in families with a condition that results in too much cystine in the urine (cystinuria).
Cystine stones may be prevented or dissolved with medicine, but this may be difficult and not very effective. If the stones cause blockage in the urinary tract or are too large, then the stone will need to be removed.
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