By way of history, I am a 47-year-old woman with a history of renal cell carcinoma. I had my first calcium oxalate stone at age 35 in my right kidney. The KUB done for the kidney stone and right kidney pain revealed a large tumor encapsulated in a membrane in my left kidney, so in that respect I was glad to have the stone. I underwent a left nephrectomy with no other follow-up treatment for the cancer and have been cancer-free since then.
In the ensuing years, I have had a chronic problem with calcium oxalate stones. This past year has been particularly bad, and this past fall I was having stone removal procedures almost every month, either Holmium laser or lithotripsy.
Whew, so much for history.
My question is this:
I frequently have aches and twinges in my right kidney. They are intermittent and last sometimes for a couple of days or an afternoon. Of course, when the pain is intense it's always wound up to be a stone. But when the pain is not intense (only a 3 or 4 on the pain scale) and goes away after a bit, what could be causing it? Could it be a small stone that I pass undetected? It's really more of an ache than a stabbing "stone" pain, although once in a while I get a "stab" that's breath-taking but only lasts for a second. Are there any other conditions that could cause such discomfort and sensations? I've asked my urologist and really haven't gotten more than some vague medical-ese. Thanks in advance for any information you can give me.