ZocdocAnswersIf you have a kidney stone, will it hurt when you take a deep breath?

Question

If you have a kidney stone, will it hurt when you take a deep breath?

I think it's my kidney

Answer

I strongly recommend you see your primary care doctor. The pain associated with kidney stones is usually diffuse, located in the back, flank (side), or radiating down to the groin, and comes in waves. Most people are extremely uncomfortable and pace or walk around, without having the pain actually be affected by things like movement, twisting, or breathing. Other signs that suggest a kidney stone is blood in your urine. You can also have pain in your side or back due to kidneys if you have a urinary tract infection or other kidney abnormality, and those two are usually associated with urinary changes such as pain, burning, blood, or foul smell. Fevers or chills can also point to infection. Pain that increases with deep breathing is called pleuritic pain, and can be caused by muscle strains, rib bruising or fracture, or lung conditions including fluid around the lungs, a pulmonary embolism, or pneumonia. You can also have pain with breathing from irritation to the diaphragm from cholecystitis, injury to the spleen, and more rarely from heart conditions. Because the range of possibilities is quite broad and some of these conditions can be serious, I would strongly recommend you see your primary care doctor to discuss whether you should undergo further testing and what can be done to control your pain.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.