Difference between kidney stones and gallstones

Difference between kidney stones and gallstones

Unlike normal stones found on the ground, we are talking about the unusual stone that may be found inside the human body. The kidney and gall bladder are vulnerable organs which become the site for stones. Such stones may hinder the functioning of these organs. Although both the kidney stones and gall stones have certain commonalities, yet they have noteworthy differences. 

Let’s know more about kidney stones and gallstones:

Our kidneys’ role is to filter blood and convert the liquid wastes into urine. Insufficient intake of water leads to the formation of kidney stones. Kidney stone is formed due to the accumulation of several minerals in the kidney. Usually, Kidney uses water for the process of mineralization but due to lack of water in the system, it makes it hard to process the mineralization and it slowly builds up the minerals and which forms the kidney stone. This stone deters the ureter and causes excruciating pain in the body. 

The purpose of the gall bladder is to store the digestive fluid called bile which is secreted by the liver which aids in the digestion and absorption of lipids in our body. Bile juice contains bile salts, cholesterol, fats, water, and bilirubin, which is a yellow-brown pigment. Gallstone is hardened deposits of bile which consist of high cholesterol levels and bilirubin.

Who’s at the risk? 

It was commonly observed that the people who had a gall stone were found prone to develop kidney stones and vice-versa. Women above age of 40years having comorbidities like diabetes and obesity are susceptible to having gallstones. People who either lost or gain weight frequently in a short span are also at risk of having gall stones. 

Men over the age of 40 are predominantly found developing kidney stones relatively to the women. Besides, it is a heredity and there is a 50% chance of developing kidney stones in the next ten years for those who once had a previous history of kidney stones. Obesity people and those who take calcium supplements are also at risk of having kidney stones.  

Signs & Symptoms of stones:

The initial stage of both the stones is asymptomatic and it can exist without causing any problem. Perhaps, it’s likely due to the size of stones that are as small as grain of sand. 

For kidney stones, sign and symptoms appear once the size of the stone turns big enough to block the flow of liquid in the urinary tract. Due to its large size, it can stretch and irritate the ureter which causes unbearable pain in the lower back which radiates to the lower back and groin part. Other symptoms include nausea, vomiting and sometimes blood in the urine. 

As for Gallstones, people usually go unnoticed of gallstone present in the gall bladder however, other times it can become as big as a golf ball which leads to Gall bladder attack. When the stone slips in the bile duct, block the bile tract and causes intolerable pain and other complications causing infections. It is essential to remember that Jaundice or high fever with chills are indicative of more serious complication, therefore, consult a doctor if you experience these symptoms. 

Treatment for gallstones and kidney stones:

Well, Medications can provide temporary relief in case of gall stones. But it’s difficult to treat big stones simply by medication. If the pain is intolerable then it is highly recommended to remove the gallstones while preserving the gall bladder. Since, there is a high chance of gallstone recurrence even after removal of stones therefore, it is high likely to remove the entire gall bladder by the procedure laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Fortunately, human beings can survive and function normally despite the removal of the gall bladder.  

For kidney stones, small stones usually pass on their own in urine by drinking plenty of fluids Taking analgesic medication can be helpful until the stone passed. If the pain is unbearable and the stone is too large and arises some medical complications then a Urologist recommends lithotripsy, surgery for the removal kidney stone. 

Can kidney stones and gallstones be prevented?

Prevention of kidney stones:

To avoid the formation of Kidney stones, it can be easily prevented by staying hydrated. Just drink plenty of water daily. People should avoid consuming food with high sodium oxalate content and animal protein.    

Prevention of Gallstones:

There is no definite guarantee for preventions for gall stone formation. Well, you can lower the risk by adopting healthy diets and avoiding fatty foods, especially those food containing high cholesterol. Instead, a Vegetarian diet and adding a high fibre diet will be helpful. The best way to prevent gallstones is by maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. 

Weight loss is another great way of lowering the risk of gall stone by exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet. It should be done slowly and correctly by taking guidance from a Nutritionist. It is necessary to consult a doctor for those who are taking oestrogen hormones or contraceptive pills. 

In conclusion, if you are experiencing either of the sign and symptoms of gall stones or kidney stones, it’s important to seek an immediate consult from a doctor. And visit the hospital which has good and reputed gastrologist and urologist.

Likewise, Yashoda hospital and Research Centre is very experienced in dealing with both kidney stones and gall stones. Head to the Yashoda hospital and Research Centre in Nehru Nagar, Ghaziabad for a diagnosis and treatment that will set you back on your path to health. Always remember, you can shape your life into what you want it to be.

Kidney stones v/s Gallstones

 Kidney stones



Kidney stone is hard crystalline made of calcium, phosphate, oxalate, and uric acids. 


It is found in the kidney or urinary tract. 


A kidney stone can be as small as a grain of sand and it can be as big as several centimetre in diameter. 

Pain occurs when:

When stone is too large and it moves through the urinary tract. In addition to that, it blocks the flow of urine.  

Pain site: 

kidney stone causes intolerable pain in the lower back that radiates to the parts of the lower abdomen and in the groin part. Pains are usually inconstant.   

Other symptoms:

Blood in the Urine, pain during urination and facing difficulty in urinating, and frequent micturition. Along with that, some other symptoms are fever, nausea, and vomiting. 

Food that contributes to the formation of Stone: 

Diet: High sodium, Oxalates, animal protein and inadequate intake of water in the system, and High calcium. 


Stone smaller than 10mm can pass in urine or it can be treated with the help of medication. Invasive surgical procedure such as lithotripsy is performed to remove kidney stones. 


50% chance of recurring kidney stones if people had a kidney stone before.

Gallstone is a hard lump made of cholesterol, bilirubin, and bile salts. 

Gallstone is found in the gall bladder or bile duct.

Stone can be as small as a grain of sand and it can as big as a golf ball.

Stone causes blockage in the gall bladder or bile duct.

It causes severe pain in the mid-upper abdomen that radiates to the back or under the shoulder blades. 

Fever, Nausea, vomiting, and sweating. 

High cholesterol diet and fatty food. 

Gall bladder removal can be done laparoscopically.  

People who already had a gall stone are more susceptible to the reappearance of gall stones. 


Yashoda Hospital

Yashoda Hospital

Yashoda Hospital is one of the best super specialty hospitals in Ghaziabad, Noida & Delhi NCR. Yashoda Hospital aims at providing the best healthcare services across the country and not just in Delhi NCR, Ghaziabad & Noida. Being a super speciality hospital, Yashoda Hospital has a number of dedicated specialities under one roof- gastroenterology, general surgery, obstetrics & gynaecology, cardiology, pulmonology & internal medicine, orthopedics, urology and many more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *