The rise in temperature due to climate change will increase the incidence of kidney stones. Scientists warn that this will happen within the next seven decades, even if measures are taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
As we influence the “health” of our planet, so does it affect our
Kidney stone disease is a condition in which hard deposits of minerals form in concentrated urine. They cause pain when passing through the urinary tract. Over the past 20 years, the incidence of kidney stones has increased, especially among women and adolescents.
In a new study, specialists from Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), USA, created a model to assess the effect of heat on future kidney stones. The scientists used data from people from South Carolina because it is in the region of the United States with a higher incidence of kidney stones.
Researchers have identified the relationship between the state’s historical average daily temperatures and the occurrence of kidney stones from 1997 to 2014. The scientists used data from a wet bulb thermometer, which takes into account both ambient temperature and humidity. They then used this data to predict the number of kidney stones that could appear due to the heat, until 2089, under two different scenarios for the development of global warming.
The first climate change scenario (RCP 4.5) represents a future with low emission energy sources, carbon capture technologies, CO2 emissions penalties and forest expansion from today to 2100. The second scenario (RCP 8.5) represents a future with predominantly unlimited greenhouse gas emissions. RCP 4.5 predicts an average temperature increase of 2.3 ° C every five years from 2010-2014 to 2085-2089, while RCP 8.5 predicts an increase of 3.6 ° C over the same time period.
Using their model, the researchers found that by 2089, the number of kidney stones due to heat will increase statewide by 2.2% in the RCP 4.5 scenario and 3.9% in the RCP 8.5. The authors of the study did not explain the very process of the relationship between disease and climate in their work, but clearly showed that the number of patients will only grow.