Antoinette Glasbergen of
"If you see me anytime, I'll have a bottle of water, I probably have a couple around the house,” says Glasbergen who lives with a common condition: kidney stones.
Kidney stones can affect men and women at any age. Caused by a buildup of calcium in the kidney, the condition produces small stones which are extremely painful when passed.
"Once you've had one, you know the feeling," says Glasbergen.
"Men do get kidney stones more than women and the reasons for that are not yet clear,” says Dr. Marvin Grieff, a nephrologist and kidney stone specialist at
Certain medications can cause kidney stones, however, the condition can be brought on by more simplistic means such as overheating, salty diets and lack of fluids.
"In some cases we don't know the cause of it so for those patients, we have general recommendations,” says Grieff.
Among the suggestions: decrease salt in the diet, increase fluids (about eight glasses a day) and do not reduce your intake of calcium.
"Dietary calcium restriction does not decrease the risk of recurring stones,” says Grieff.
Antoinette follows this regimen but for others, medications may be needed to treat the stones. The cause of kidney stones can be determined through a simple urine analysis done at your primary care doctor’s office. An analysis can help a specialist tailor a treatment to fit your specific needs.
"The medication changes may include certain blood pressure medications, certain medications we use for gout...medications which are currently used for other conditions,” says Grieff.
Antoinette's lived with kidney stones for 30 years but with proper management her last kidney stone was six years ago.
"I know what not to eat, I listen to my doctor when he says to drink a lot of water and that's what I do.”