Do kidney problems cause lower back pain?

Yes, it is possible for a variety of kidney problems to cause lower back pain. Kidney related low back pain is at the top of the list of possible causes when no recent accident or injury has occurred to explain back pain.

Kidney disease or injury can cause lower back pain in one of two ways:
  • A reflex pain from an internal organ that is experienced on the surface of the body, due to excitation of what is called a viscerosomatic reflex.
  • Direct swelling and pressure of an enlarged or inflamed kidney that applies direct pressure to the low back muscles and nerves, causing pain in the immediate area of the kidney.

Common symptoms of lower back pain caused by kidney involvement:
  • Dull deep pain in the low back over the area of one or both kidneys
  • Kidney sore to touch
  • Elevated body temperature
  • Urinary frequency
  • Cloudiness of the urine
  • Blood in the urine
  • Pain or burning when urinating