The Urinary Tract & How It Works | NIDDK
From the kidneys, urine travels down two thin tubes called ureters to the bladder. The ureters are about 8 to 10 inches long. Muscles in the ureter walls. Surface morphology of kidney, ureters and urinary bladder models based on data the right and left kidney, there were defined their topographic relations to the. From the calyxes, pee travels out of the kidneys through the ureters (YUR-uh-ters ) to be stored in the bladder (a muscular sac in the lower belly). When a person.
The elevated pressure due to the obstruction may ultimately damage the kidney and can result in loss of its function. When the flow of urine is obstructed, stones calculi are more likely to form.
Kidneys and Urinary Tract
An infection may develop when the flow of urine is obstructed because bacteria that enter the urinary tract are not flushed out. If both kidneys are obstructed, kidney failure may result. Long-standing distention of the renal pelvis and ureter can also inhibit the rhythmic muscular contractions that normally move urine down the ureter from the kidney to the bladder peristalsis.
Scar tissue may then replace the normal muscular tissue in the walls of the ureter, resulting in permanent damage. Partial and complete obstruction tend to cause similar problems, but most problems, and particularly kidney damage, are more severe when obstruction is complete.
Causes Blockage may be partial or complete, affect one side or both sides, and develop rapidly acutely or slowly chronically. The most common causes overall are In children: Structural abnormalities—for example, birth defects such as valves in the inside back part of the urethra called posterior urethral valves and other constrictions that narrow or block the ureter or urethra In young adults: Stones in a kidney or ureter or elsewhere in the urinary tract In older adults: Benign prostatic hyperplasia BPH or prostate cancertumors, and stones Because BPH is so common in older men, obstruction is more common among men.
Other common causes of obstruction include strictures narrowing caused by scar tissue of the ureter or urethra that develop after radiation therapy, surgery, or procedures done on the urinary tract see Urethral Stricture. The many other possible causes of urinary tract obstruction include the following: Polyps in the ureter Blood clot in the ureter Tumors in or near the ureter Disorders of the muscles or nerves in the ureter or bladder such as due to drugs that have anticholinergic effects [see Anticholinergic: What Does It Mean?
Hormonal changes during pregnancy may worsen the problem by reducing the muscular contractions that normally move urine down the ureters. This condition, commonly called hydronephrosis of pregnancy, usually resolves when the pregnancy ends, although the renal pelvis and ureters may remain somewhat distended afterward. Symptoms Symptoms depend on the cause, location, and duration of the obstruction.
If the kidney is distended, renal colic can develop. Renal colic is an excruciating pain between the ribs and hip on the affected side that comes and goes every few minutes. The pain may extend into a testis or the vaginal area.
Kidneys and Urinary Tract (for Parents)
People may have nausea and vomiting. Obstruction of one ureter does not reduce how much people urinate. Obstruction can stop or reduce urination if blockage affects the ureters from both kidneys or if it affects the urethra. Obstruction of the urethra or bladder outlet may cause pain, pressure, and distention of the bladder. People who have slowly progressive obstruction that causes hydronephrosis may have no symptoms, or they may have attacks of dull, aching discomfort in the flank the part of the back between the lower end of the ribs and the spine on the affected side.
Urinary Tract Obstruction - Kidney and Urinary Tract Disorders - MSD Manual Consumer Version
Sometimes, a kidney stone temporarily blocks the ureter and causes pain that occurs intermittently. Obstruction that leads to hydronephrosis may cause vague digestive tract symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. When a person needs to pee, the bladder walls tighten and a ring-like muscle that guards the exit from the bladder to the urethra, called the sphincter SFINK-turrelaxes.
This lets pee go into the urethra and out of the body. To help keep your child's kidneys and urinary tract healthy: Encourage plenty of exercise. Offer a nutritious diet. Help your child stay hydrated.
Teach your daughter to wipe from front to back after pooping so germs don't get into the urethra. Avoid bubble baths, sitting in the tub after shampoo has been used, and scented soaps. These can irritate the urethra. Your child should wear cotton underwear. Kids should change out of wet bathing suits promptly.
Go for regular medical checkups. Talk to the doctor before giving your child any supplements or herbal treatments.
The Urinary Tract & How It Works
Let the doctor know about any family history of kidney problems, diabetes, or high blood pressure. A person is exposed to low levels of radiation during a KUB study.
The risk of radiation exposure from an X-ray is considered minimal compared to the benefits of the information your doctor can gather from it. They may need to take special precautions or not perform this study at all.
If you take bismuth, your doctor may recommend you stop taking it for a few days before the test. Bismuth is used to treat diarrhea and heartburn and can interfere with abdominal X-ray imaging. A KUB study has few if any risks. In some cases, lying in the correct position and holding still for the X-ray may cause minor discomfort. How is a KUB study performed? This study typically takes place in a radiology department or center. An X-ray technician performs it.
Preparation for a KUB study is minimal.