Medical professionals advice increasing water intake during iftar and avoid salty meals
Hospitals and clinics in the United Arab Emirates generally see an increase in the number of patients suffering from kidney stones, bladder infections and other urinary complaints during Ramadan due to increased levels of dehydration.
“So Ramadan there are certain things which we are watching, especially among the blue collar workers during Ramadan as they are exposed to the sun… They are coming with more dehydration and such issues,” chairman and founder Dr Azad Moopen told Arabian Business during an interview at the company’s headquarters in Dubai’s Business Bay.
Dr Moopen said it was common to see more cases of kidney stones and urinary problems as residents are drinking less water and less urine is being passed through their systems during the hours of fasting.
“This is not only for the blue collar workers, but more incidents of renal colic or due to small stones pieces which get stuck in the urethra,” he added.
Founded in 1987, Aster DM Healthcare employees 17,800 people across 21 hospitals, 113 clinics and 219 pharmacies in nine countries in its core markets of India and the GCC.
Dr Zaki Almallah, consultant urologist at the Bladder Centre at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, said he generally sees a rise in cases during the hot summer months and during the fasting period during the holy month.
“There is a trend and impression that there is an increase in the number of people presenting with kidney stones during summer and during Ramadan,” he said.
“We know that this region in particular has a high incidence of kidney stones. We know very well that people develop kidney stones because they drink less water. You can put the assumption that during Ramadan people are not drinking [so] they are going to be more susceptible to kidney stones and symptoms,” he added.
Dr Almallah has a number of tips for patients prone to kidney stones during Ramadam. Firstly, once iftar has been announced, suffers should eat dates and a full glass of water.
“Then during the big meal have as much water as possible, about half a litre and during the night to drink more. Before dawn, kidney stone suffers should consciously take about 20 to 25 percent more water than usual,” he added.
In terms of food choices, he also recommended people avoid salty food as these can aggravate kidney stones.