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Hot weather, more kidney stones: study

A new study contains bad news for those who suffer from chronic kidney stones: Hot weather may exacerbate the problem.

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The study was published Thursday in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives. It looked at kidney stone problems among chronic sufferers in several cities, including Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago and Dallas. Bottom line, as temperatures rose above 50 degrees, the risk of this painful condition increases among those with a history of stones.

Statistics indicate approximately 9 out of every 100 people in the U.S. suffer from kidney stones, which can be excruciating and may generate urinary tract infections or even worse health issues in extreme cases.

Dr. Gregory Tasian, urologist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, said as people who are prone to kidney stones sweat more or produce more urine in the heat, the problematic minerals in the kidneys that can form stones, such as calcium and oxalates, become more concentrated, “and thus either cause a new stone to form, or a pre-existing stone to become bigger.”

The study also found more chronic kidney stone sufferers are often stricken when temps are extremely low. Tasian’s solution? Stay well hydrated. He said that means drinking plenty of fresh water.

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