Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis)

Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis)


Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis/ Kidney stone/ Renal Calculus) is one of the most common health problems, which affect approximately 15 % population worldwide. While in India approximately 2.3% population is affected by this disease.

Composition: It is crystalline, hard mineral material formed within the kidney or urinary tract. In other words it is a concretion, crystalline mass or a solid accumulations of material. It is formed by precipitation of various urinary solutes in the tubal system of the kidney.

Size: It’s size varies from as small as grains of sand to large as golf ball.

Urolithiasis (Hisaat-e- Bauliyah) is a term originated from three Greek words, “ouron‟ for urine, “oros‟ for flow, and “lithos‟ for stone. It is the process of formation of stone in the urinary system, which includes Nephrolithiasis (Hisaat-e- Kuliyah), Ureterolithiasis (Hisaat-e- Haalib) and Cystolithiasis (Hisaat-e- Masaanah).

Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Kidney stones also called renal calculi) cause problems when they block urine flow inside or outside of the kidneys. They typically leave the body by passage in the urine stream. Many stones are formed and passed without causing any symptom in the body. These stones are common cause of blood in urine and often severe pain in the abdomen, groin and flank.

Data shows that one in every 20 people develops a kidney stone at some point in their life span. About 80% of those with kidney stones are men while 20% are women. Most commonly men experience their first episode between 20-30 years of age, while women experiences at their later age.

In India, the stones belt occupies parts of Gujarat, Punjab, Maharashtra, Delhi, Haryana and Rajasthan. In these regions, renal stone is so prevalent that most of the members of a family suffer from this disease sometime in their lives. Its prevalence is as high as 7.6% in Satpura region of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and parts of Andhra Pradesh. It is also reported that a high and progressively increasing incidence of kidney stones in Udaipur and some other parts of Rajasthan.

Historical Background

In ancient civilization mankind is known to be suffering from urinary stone disease, which was found in tombs of Egyptian mummies dated 4800 BC and in the graves of north American Indians from 1500- 1000 BC. Buqrat (Hippocrates) in the 4th century BC, noted renal stones together with renal abscess and wrote it in the Hippocratic Oath as “I will not cut the stone”.

Unani Concept of Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis)

According to Ali ibn-e- Sina (980-1037 AD), Kidney stone is formed by active power (Qoowat-e- Faayelah), which raises the temperature inside kidney. He also stated that stone producing matter / lithic matter (Maaddat-ul- Hisaat) is a viscous and sticky substance, may be either phlegm or viscous blood or pus. When expulsive power (Qoowat-e- Daafeá) of the kidney become weak due to altered temperament, hot inflammation or ulcer, then in spite of excreting out they retained in the calyces of kidney. Thus the lithic substance dried by the active power (Qoowat-e- Faayelah) of kidney to form crystal and gradually becomes stone.

Ali Ibn-e-Abbas Majoosi (930-994 AD) states, when more concentrated humours and highly viscous fluid adhere to the calyces of kidney, thus these humours and fluid dried by the high virulent temperature to form crystal and after some time gradually it results in stone formation. Jaleenoos (Galen) describes that, nephrolithiasis is mostly caused by the ulcer of the kidney, if pus is not passing out, it consolidates to form stone.

According to Ibn-e- Zohr (1091-1162 AD), when the kidney is unable to excrete out the thick humours due to its weakness, then these thick humours become deposited inside the kidney as a result of layer by layer crystallizations stone is formed.

According to Zakaria Razi (850-923 AD), the cause of this disease is abnormal humours and the body excretes the abnormal humor in the form of viscid fluid which moves towards the kidneys and form crests that cause the stone formation. Recurrence of stone formation is common.

Aetiology of Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis) as per Modern Philosophy

As per modern philosophy, major risk factors responsible for the Nephrolithiasis/ kidney stone are inadequate urinary drainage, certain diets with excess intake of oxalates and calcium, certain microbial infections, vitamin abnormalities i.e.; excess intake of vitamin D, deficiency of Vitamin-A, certain metabolic diseases like gout, cystinuria, hyperparathyroidism, etc. apart from that intestinal dysfunction and environmental factors related to particular regions with hot and dry climatic conditions.

The anatomical structure of the upper and the lower tract might be contributing factor in predisposing an individual to urinary tract infection or stasis. The major anatomical abnormalities found were obstruction of the horseshoe kidney, ureteropelvic junction, incomplete or complete duplicated ureter, bifid pelvis, and medullary sponge kidney.

They all are known to be responsible for the formation of kidney stone. Increased rates of blood pressure and obesity, which are linked to urolithiasis, also contribute to an increase in the formation of stone.

Pathophysiology of Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis) as per Unani philosophy

According to Unani philosophy, weakness of kidneys, viscous and thick humour, concentrated and sticky fluid, Su-e-Mizaj Kulyah (ill temperament of kidney), Waram-e- Kuliyah (nephritis), Qurooh-e-Kuliyah (kidney ulcer), weakness of expulsive power (Quwwat-e-Dafey’ah) of kidney and high virulent temperature are considered as potential causes for nephrolithiasis.

According to Unani medicine causes of stone formation in kidney is morbid matter (ghaleez madda) and stagnation of this morbid matter. This Morbid matter (Ghaleez madda) is produced by Ghaleez Aghzia e.g. concentrated milk, paneer, big birds (dhanek etc.) and meat of old camel, old bull, old goat, ghaleez meat, roasted meat and fish meat who has the properties of ghaleez and sangeen, roti (feteeri, leshdar, maida), kheer, sewayyan, and those food and fruits which are not easily digested as like raw apple, raw shaftaloo, seed of utaraj, seed of guava and also polluted water.

All these substances produce thick and viscous matter in the body, when the qoowat-e- haazima is weak so it leads to formation of morbid humour (ghaleez khilt) and pneuma (reeh). This pneuma (reeh) gets accumulated in the urinary tract. This matter (madda) remain in the kidney for long time; mainly because of weakness of kidney or weakness of its power of expultion which frequently develop consequent upon su-e- mizaj-e- kuliya or waram-e- har kuliya or qarha-e- kuliya. Under the influence of haraarat this ghaleez madda converted into gravel and gets expelled or stays back in the kidney and gets changes into stones.

Types of Hasaat-e- Kuliyah (Nephrolithiasis)

Going through the chemical composition, approximately 80% of stones are composed of calcium oxalate (Hisaat-e- Tootiyah) and calcium phosphate (Hisaat-e- Qaimooliyah). Out of these Calcium oxalate monohydrate (about 40-60%), Calcium oxalate dehydrate (about 40-60%), Calcium hydrogen phosphate (about 2-4%) Calcium orthophosphate (less than 1%). 10% of uric acid and urate stones (Hisat-e- Bauliyah) are composed of pure uric acid or ammonium/ sodium urate. 1% of struvite (magnesium ammonium phosphate produced during infection with bacteria that possess the enzyme urease). The remaining approximately 1% of cystine stone (Hisat-e- Zoobaniyah) contains sulphur. About 1% of Xanthine stone (Hisaat-e-Layyinah) is very rare.

Mixed Stones (about 50-60%); Mixed calcium oxalate-phosphate (about 35-40%) Mixed uric acid-calcium oxalate (about 5%) are very common.

Signs and symptoms