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Assuta Ashdod Study Discovers that Women Experience Greater Pain from Urinary Tract Stones

Updated: Jan 22, 2023

We’ve all heard the horror stories about men passing huge kidney stones.

It’s like having a baby, people say, with all the associated pain and discomfort, and none of the reward. The truth is, men are more likely to have urinary tract stones than women, but most stones pass either unnoticed or with little pain.

One in 10 people worldwide will likely develop a stone over their lifetimes, and in recent years the incidence of the condition has been increasing. A sudden kidney stone attack often results in a trip to the emergency room.

Given the frequency and severity of the condition, researchers at Assuta Ashdod recently conducted a study in which they examined whether men and women experience urinary tract stones differently and if age has any influence on the severity of pain associated with the condition.

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The study, conducted by Dr. Orit Raz, Director of Assuta Ashdod’s urology department, and Dr. Dor Golomb, a senior doctor in the department, tracked 800 patients between 2018 and 2020. They found that patients between the ages of 31-50 suffered significantly higher pain intensity than those in the older cohort of 70 years and over.

That was true even though older people are more likely to have larger stones and to suffer from co-morbidities. In fact, once a person develops a stone, he or she has a 50 percent likelihood of developing another within five to seven years.

“Urinary tract stones are a chronic condition, and should be treated as such,” says study co-author Dr. Dor Golomb. “A patient with stones should be in regular contact with a urologist to avoid further complications from the disease.”

Drs. Raz and Golomb also discovered that women with urinary tract stones experience more pain than men and are at greater risk for symptoms like nausea, vomiting, fever, and inflammation.

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