Cause

Kidney stones may form when the normal balance of water, salts, minerals, and other substances found in urine changes. How this balance changes determines the type of kidney stone you have. Most kidney stones are calcium-type-they form when the calcium levels in your urine change.

Things that change your urine balance include:

  • Not drinking enough water. When you don't drink enough water, the salts, minerals, and other substances in the urine can stick together and form a stone. This is the most common cause of kidney stones.
  • Medical conditions. Many medical conditions can affect the normal balance and cause stones to form. Examples include gout and inflammatory bowel disease, such as Crohn's disease.

More commonly, kidney stones can run in families, as stones often occur in family members over several generations.

In rare cases, a person forms kidney stones because the parathyroid glands produce too much of a hormone. This leads to higher calcium levels and possibly calcium kidney stones.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
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