Q: What are kidney stones, and how are they treated?
A: Kidney stones are hard collections of salt and minerals often made up of calcium or uric acid. They affect approximately 11% of men and 6% of women. The stones form in the kidney and then can travel to other parts of the urinary tract. Stones vary in size and in degree of severity.
Calcium oxalate stones make up 70% to 80% of all kidney stones. Calcium-based stones can be influenced by diet, fluid intake, and other factors. Uric acid stones, a less common form, can occur when the urine is acidic. Struvite stones are associated with urinary tract infections.