How to treat kidney stones with a home remedy.
If you've ever had a kidney stone you know that it's a rough road to travel. Not only are they extremely painful, you don't really know when Mr. Stone is going to decide to find his way out. Many people equate the pain of kidney stones to the pain of giving childbirth. I wouldn't know because I haven't given childbirth and being a man, I'm not able to do so. I will say that it as painful and it's as almost as bad as a migraine headache. My experiences with migraines have been worse though.
My kidney stone occurred in the middle of July. I live in south Georgia where there is a significantly high number of kidney stone occurances. Some say it because of the surplus of lime in this region. I worked outside, was in decent shape and ate reasonably healthy. I do love my southern food though. I don't smoke and don't drink for the most part. This was my only experience with stones and given our hot summers and the type of work I was doing, I suspect that improper hydration may have had a role in this.
While searching for any and every remedy possible, I found websites where people want you to pay them for e-books etc. with basically the same information that I am going to share. When you're balled up in the floor in pain, you'd pay anything to make it stop. With that said, I don't agree with turning a simple home remedy into a million dollar secret. Unfortunately, when you Google kidney stone remedies, these pay pages are what appear.
I'm going to share my experience, what I learned and the home remedy that likely helped me get rid of a stone. There are variations on this but the basics are the same. I think results can vary from case to case but many people swear by this trick. With that said I am not making any claims. This is only my experience. I am not a health care professional and I strongly advise seeing a doctor if you suspect that you have kidney stones.
My first experience... (not for the squeamish)
The first time I noticed a problem was when I suddenly began having difficulty urinating. There wasn't so much pain as there was general discomfort and a sensation of extreme pressure in my nether region. I spoke to my mother, an experienced nurse, and we agreed that it was likely a stone. She warned me that urine retention was dangerous and to go to the ER if I couldn't urinate. Within a day, I had a very painful urination that presented blood. I assumed that I passed a stone and things were normal for about a week.
About a week later, I was out with my son and had 2 back to back episodes of a severe cutting pain in my lower abdomen. It came on quick without much warning. I went straight to the local ER. Fortunately they were not busy and got me right to the back. After triage, they took blood and urine samples and asked me if I had been a naughty boy. A CT scan revealed a 3mm stone and they found a urinary tract infection. I got pain pills, antibiotics, Flomax and was sent home with instructions to push a lot of fluids. "It should pass in a couple of days and follow up with a urologist." Yeah right...
Friends with kidney stone experience advised me to drink lots of beer or lots of lemonade. I tried both and lots of water with no results. There was only occasional pain and I was not allowed to work until a doctor declared me stone free. A week went by and I went to the appointment with the urologist. The doctor said the stone was actually 5mm and had not really moved from where the CT showed it to be. I learned that ureters are about 4mm in diameter and the battle was getting the stone past that. He gave me less than a week to pass the stone and then it would be removal by Lithoscopy. I was less than thrilled about that and the fat hospital bill that would have followed. The doctor also warned that if a fever emerged, it would be a kidney infection which would result in immediate hospitalization and an unwelcome visit from the barbaric Mr. Scope.
Developed in Medieval times, the heinous cystoscope has been an instrument of persuasion for centuries. It has brought down great armies of the burliest men and I'm surprised that more police agencies aren't using it to get confessions.
A Star is Born...
A couple of days went by with a steady diet of beer and lemonade, but no results. I did some Googling to see if there were any more tricks. I got past the pages selling the "miracle cure with common grocery items" and found this recipe. With 2 days left to spare, I gambled $6.
Here's the recipe:
- 1 can of asparagus
- A 6-pack of 12oz Cokes (or 2 liter bottle)
- Lemon juice
After heating, empty the entire can of asparagus and its liquid into a blender. Add the lemon juice and blend it well until it is a liquid slurry. Drink all of it at once. It's unpleasant but it won't matter if you're in pain. I've seen variations on the lemon juice with some not using it at all. I used as much as I think I could handle, over 1/4 cup if I recall.
Wait 20 minutes and start drinking the Coke. Drink all of the Coke within an hour of starting the first one. This is not easy. Try not to urinate for as long as you can stand it. When you finish, drink plenty of water.
After 4 Cokes, there was more holding it. I had to go. With no pain, out came my unwelcome companion. It turned out to be about 7mm, explaining its delayed exit. I turned the stone over to the urologist for analysis and another X-ray showed me to be stone free.
I think it would be impossible to say that this remedy is solely what rid me of the stone; but I do know that after all that time with nothing happening, the stone was out within 2 hours of me drinking the green shake. There was some minor pain the night before so there may have been some movement then.
I think from a semi-scientific standpoint, that this remedy is fairly reasonable. Asparagus is known to be a natural diuretic. The acids present in Coke and lemon juice can erode or break down the minerals in a stone. This also made me go with a force that I've never seen before so the amount of pressure may have played a part. Maybe it was a combination of everything including the time waiting. It's worth a try to I would do it again but hopefully I won't have to.
An ounce of prevention...
Prevention is the best medicine. It's important to become educated about kidney stones, especially if they are a reoccuring problem.
My case was a, so far, was a 1 time deal and I think it was related to hydration. Proper hydration is important thing, stones or not. Even though delicious Coke is part of this home remedy, a steady diet of soda is not good for you and increases your risk of kidney stones.
Your diet plays a role and certain foods have the building blocks of different types of stones. Heavy calcium can contribute but it is said that magnesium will help the body properly process calcium. Animal proteins have uric acid which causes gout and/or kidney stones. Greens such as spinach, chocolate and other foods have calcium oxalates which may be a contributor. Everyone's chemistry is different so different people can have different predispositions with kidney stone formation. If you have or pass a stone, you should see your doctor. The stone can be analyzed and give you direction on what foods need to be avoided.