A new breakthrough could help kidney stone sufferers get an exact diagnosis and specific treatment after genetic links to the condition were identified. Academics from Newcastle and Harvard universities have found that many cases of kidney stones have a genetic cause – meaning that specific early treatments can be given and other family members can be screened for the disease.

Kidney stones are a serious condition which affects one in ten people in the UK. Kidney stones are formed when minerals in the urine collect together to form blocks of hard material. They are usually a few millimetres wide and impair the function of the kidney, lead to serious infections and blockages of the kidney.

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