Nephrocalcinosis is a kidney disorder in which an excess of calcium, calcium oxalate, and calcium phosphate gets deposited in the kidney. More common in premature babies, in this form of illness both kidneys are affected with calcium deposits that are beyond a normal reference range. Though more often this illness doesn’t cause any early symptoms, some adults may display certain signs indicating a renal problem. Some symptoms could also be due to a related health condition that is causing nephrocalcinosis. While some genetic problems are also a potential underlying cause of this disorder which could have risen due to an inheritance pattern, the ailment can also occur due to several multiple factors. Nephrocalcinosis if not treated can lead to renal dysfunction or sudden kidney failure.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Nephrocalcinosis?

Though the symptoms of the disease may not appear at the outset, however, the following symptoms may arrive later, more so if kidney stones are present in the renal system:

  • Blood in the urine
  • Intermittent fever which may be accompanied by chills
  • Nausea
  • Pain in the abdomen and groin area
  • Sudden sharp pain in the back
  • Episodes of urinary tract infection
  • Polyuria and polydipsia
  • Hypertension

What Causes Nephrocalcinosis?

Besides hereditary factors, this ailment can be caused by several health disorders that lead calcium levels to rise in the blood such as:

  • Severe Glomerulonephritis- An inflammation in the tiny filters or (glomeruli) in the kidneys causes calcium levels to rise in an exorbitant amount
  • Hypercalcemia- When the calcium level in your blood is extremely high. It can be due to overactive parathyroid glands and cause kidney stones. Hypercalcemia may also occur due to hyperparathyroidism
  • Hyperoxaluria- Hyperoxaluria is when you have excessive oxalate in your urine. A natural chemical of the body, it may be found in certain types of food and is safe. However, excess of it in the urine causes many disorders
  • Rejection Of Kidney Transplant- Sometimes our kidneys do not accept a transplant which may happen in the initial phase. This may cause nephrocalcinosis in some cases
  • Renal Tubular Acidosis- This disorder occurs when the kidneys do not remove acids from the blood into the urine. The level of acid in the blood becomes too high thus causing acidosis which creates excess calcium in the blood
  • Kidney Tuberculosis- Renal TB or tuberculosis of the kidney is a type of extra-pulmonary tuberculosis that affects one or both kidneys and raise calcium levels
  • Vitamin D Toxicity- High intake of supplements that contain Vitamin D probably more than 10,000 IU/day or more may cause Vitamin D excess thus leading to hypercalcemia

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Can Nephrocalcinosis Be Cured?

Treatment for nephrocalcinosis involves various methods to reduce levels of calcium, oxalate, and phosphate in urine as well as in blood. Some medicines and essential supplements are suggested, and patients are also advised to make long-term changes in their diet to prevent calcium buildup in the kidneys.  If there is any underlying condition that may be causing nephrocalcinosis, one must undergo treatment for that as well.

Prevention of Nephrocalcinosis

The best way to prevent nephrocalcinosis is to treat all the disorders that may be behind a rise in levels of calcium in the kidney whether it is excessive use of supplements, genetic factors, or an underlying illness. Timely diagnosis and treatment of these conditions can help prevent and manage the disease. The patient should also drink plenty of water to keep the kidneys clean and release urine which should be at least two to three liters a day. This helps prevent stone formation in the long run. Dietary measures are also important that include strict restrictions on any animal-based protein.


Nephrocalcinosis refers to a health disorder when there is a deposition of excess calcium oxalate and calcium phosphate in the kidneys. More common in infants, several underlying health conditions and genetic disorders associated with metabolic abnormalities may lead to the progression of this condition. Treatment for this problem is possible which involves reducing levels of calcium in the body. Various diet changes are also recommended to the patients that should be strictly adhered to worsen the situation. Untimely diagnosis and treatment of nephrocalcinosis can lead to severe renal complications and kidney failure.