What is a renal colic? Know its causes and how long it lasts

Have you felt a strong pain in the lower back, but it is not muscular? You are most likely suffering a renal colic. This type of pain is caused by an obstruction in the urinary tract due to kidney stones, which does not allow urine to flow through its channels, becoming stagnant.

It is an unbearable pain, where no matter what position the patient adopts, it is not relieved. How can it be prevented? What are your causes? Find out below.

Causes of kidney colic

This occurs due to the presence of stones in the ureter. When the kidney is obstructed by stones, urine is retained and the urinary tract dilates in such a way that it causes a lot of pain in the lower back.

In addition to stones, the presence of tumors that obstruct the kidney also causes colic. Other diseases of benign origin also dilate the vessels, such as retroperitoneal fibrosis, generating renal colic.

How do kidney stones start?

Both men and women can get kidney stones. Those that originate from Urinary infections is more common in women, and other cases of its appearance is due to uric acid build-up in the body.

Who gets it?

It usually appears more in men than in women, between the ages of 30 and 60. There are those who suffer from hereditary diseases such as cystinuria, as well as others who suffer from hyperuricemia, or their body generates calcium stones frequently, or simply those who do not ingest enough amounts of water per day.

The good news is that there are people who will have only kidney colic in their entire lives. But the bad news is that there are those who will suffer them frequently after a certain age.


The most relevant symptom of renal colic is pain intense in the lower back, either on the right or left side. Once the pain sets in, it continues to the genitals or to the bladder.

This is not the only symptom, because the pain is accompanied by:

  • Vomiting
  • Sickness
  • Fever
  • Difficulty expelling urine from the body
  • Blood in the urine
  • Irritation or burning in the urinary tract when urinating
  • Anuria, as the most serious symptom of the condition

And when the pain comes, how long does it last?

It appears suddenly and can last 10 minutes, as well as reaching a crisis of several hours continuous with the pain.

How can you prevent it?

Before reaching the painful part, the general recommendations is to identify the presence of kidney stones and therefore destroy them before they are definitively deposited in the kidney.

Homemade diets to take care of the kidney

Before reaching the moment of crisis, you can avoiding kidney colic with a diet reduced in meats and sugars in desserts and fruit. The use of infusions of the chancapiedra plant has also become popular to reduce the accumulation of large stones, in a maximum of 20 days in a row. However, it is necessary to consult this treatment with a specialist.

Possible treatments

The doctor prescribes anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen to alleviate the suffering caused by pain in this area. But if the pain is excruciating, the doctor may give pain relievers intravenously for greater effectiveness.

If you are in the middle of a crisis and do not have immediate medical assistance, you can put a hot water compress on the side where the pain is accentuated, to relieve it.

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