When Are They Not Helpful
When people have pain, they often take pain medicines called NSAIDs . These include:
- Advil and Motrin . Ibuprofen is also in other over-the-counter drugs, such as cold medicines.
- Aleve .
- Celebrex .
NSAIDs help ease pain and inflammation.
But if you have high blood pressure, heart failure, or kidney disease, you should not take an NSAID. And you should not take any drugs that have ibuprofen or another NSAID in them.
Why Is Advil Bad For Your Kidneys If It Is Processed By The Liver And Tylenol Not So Harmful When I
- 10 Jan 2014 by Twfinklea
Advil, Excedrin, and Motrin have Ibuprofen in them. Aspirin and Ibuprofen are not good for people with kidney disease. I have Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3, and aspirin caused me to go into Acute Renal Failure. My Nephrologist told me, NO aspirin, NO ibuprofen. Advil and Excedrin were the only thing that helped me with headaches or arthritis pain and it has been very hard for me to stick to Tylenol. You can be sure if you take too much Tylenol, it can also cause issues with the kidneys, so I take 1/2 the dose of 500 mg. Drinking lots of water has helped more than anything. Most people dont take medication with a full glass of water. Just a sip will do they think. But to protect your body parts, use lots of water.Hope this helps.
Key Points About Analgesic Nephropathy
- Long term use of pain killers can cause damage to the kidneys. This includes over-the-counter and prescription pills.
- This condition is most common in people older than 45 years of age, and more prevalent in women over 30.
- Often there are no symptoms. It may be found on routine blood or urine tests.
- Symptoms are related to the build-up of toxins and waste products that are normally filtered by the kidneys.
- Analgesic nephropathy can lead to acute kidney failure, cancer, or atherosclerosis in later stages.
Recommended Reading: How Do You Know Your Kidneys Are Failing
Regular Use Of Pain Medicines Doesnt Damage Kidneys
July 17, 2001 Aspirin and similar pain medicines are such a part of everyday life about a quarter of U.S. adults use them weekly that most of us assume theyre perfectly safe. But for years, doctors have cautioned that regular use of these drugs can cause major damage to your kidneys and cause bleeding in the stomach.
A new study gives us one less thing to worry about: Moderate use of over-the-counter pain relievers isnt likely to lead to kidney problems, the researchers found. However, two doctors who reviewed the study for WebMD believe overuse of pain medicines, particularly over a long period of time, may still be harmful.
The study in July 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association looked at the use of nonprescription pain medicines such as aspirin, acetaminophen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Motrin, Advil, or Aleve in more than 11,000 healthy men over a 14-year period.
They found no increase in kidney problems among men who took an average of three or four pills a week The study didnt look at other possible side effects of these drugs such as harm to the liver or gastrointestinal bleeding.
People in the U.S. tend to drink too little water, and that puts additional stress on the kidneys, Avram says. When you look at elderly people who drink only a small amount of water, and also take lots of pain medicines, thats a set-up for disaster.
Read Also: Reducose Weight Loss
Watch Out For Your Kidneys When You Use Medicines For Pain
What do you do if you have a headache, fever, or muscle pain? Chances are you go to the local drug store to pick up an overthecounter pain medicine. These drugs are the medicines most often used by Americans. Pain medicines, also called analgesics, help relieve pain, fever, and even inflammation. These medicines may help with arthritis, colds, headache , muscle aches, menstrual cramps, sinusitis and toothache.
These drugs are effective and usually safe. However, it is important to realize that no medicine is completely without risk. They should be used carefully. When used improperly, pain medicines can cause problems in the body, including the kidneys. According to the National Kidney Foundation, as many as 3 percent to 5 percent of new cases of chronic kidney failure each year may be caused by the overuse of these painkillers. Once kidney disease occurs, continued use of the problem drug makes it worse.
Nonprescription pain medicines should not be used without your doctors permission if you know you have low kidney function. Also, even if your kidney function is good, longterm use with high doses of these pain drugs may harm the kidneys. Kidney damage happens because high doses of the drugs have a harmful effect on kidney tissue and structures. These drugs can also reduce the blood flow to the kidney. If you are older, your kidneys may have a stronger reaction to these medicines and you may need a smaller dose.
You May Like: Is Pomegranate Juice Good For Your Kidneys
Also Check: How Fast Can You Get Kidney Stones
What Is The Treatment For Analgesic Nephropathy
Your healthcare provider will figure out the best treatment based on:
- How old you are
- Your overall health and past health
- How sick you are
- How well you can handle specific medicines, procedures, or therapies
- How long the condition is expected to last
- Your opinion or preference
- Stopping all pain killers you have been taking, especially OTC medicines
- Dietary changes
- Behavioral changes or counseling to help control chronic pain
Treatment aims to prevent any further kidney damage, and treat any existing kidney failure.
If You Have Kidney Disease Other Medications Can Be Harmful
If your kidneys are already damaged, certain drugs can make them worse or lead to kidney failure. Talk to your doctor before taking cholesterol or diabetes medication, antacid medicine for an upset stomach, or antimicrobial meds, like antifungal and antiviral drugs. In some cases, you may be able to take a smaller dose that’s safer for you.
You also should talk to your doctor before having some kinds of imaging tests. With a magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomography scan, doctors sometimes use a dye to help them see a specific area of your body better. In rare cases, this dye can cause serious conditions called contrast-induced nephropathy or nephrogenic systemic fibrosis . Ask your doctor about other tests you might have instead.
National Kidney Foundation: “Contrast Dye and the Kidneys,” “How Your Kidneys Work,” “Oral Sodium Phosphate Safety Alerts,” “Pain Medicines ,” “Watch out for Your Kidneys When You Use Medicines for Pain,” “Which Drugs are Harmful to Your Kidneys?”
MedShadow: “6 Medications That Can Harm the Kidneys.”
Cleveland Clinic: “Supplements, OTCs May Hurt Your Kidneys.”
Also Check: Does Salt Hurt Your Kidneys
Could Diclofenac Gel Harm Your Kidneys
Q. I am especially sensitive to NSAIDs because of impaired kidney function. My doctor prescribed diclofenac gel for a muscle injury. Am I absorbing enough of this product to be harmful?
A. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like diclofenac, ibuprofen or naproxen can be hard on the kidneys. The official prescribing information for diclofenac warns that long-term administration could cause renal injury.
It is not clear whether you would absorb enough diclofenac from a topical gel to harm your kidneys. This is best determined by frequent monitoring. Ask your doctor to check your kidney function carefully.
Factors That Can Add Up To Cause Harm
When you get sick from something like the flu or diarrhea, or have trouble drinking enough fluids, the blood pressure in your body may decrease. As a result, the pressure in your kidneys can be low, too.
In most cases, healthy kidneys can protect themselves. However, if you keep taking your blood pressure medicines when youre dehydrated or have low blood pressure, your kidneys might have a hard time protecting themselves. The pressure within your kidneys might drop so low that your kidneys wont filter normally.
If youre dehydrated, NSAIDs can also keep your kidneys from protecting themselves. As a result, taking NSAIDs when youre sick and dehydrated can cause kidney injury.
Recommended Reading: Who Is Most Likely To Get Kidney Cancer
Nsaids Are Bad For Your Heart And Kidneys
Long-term use of NSAIDs can make your body hold onto fluid. This can make the symptoms of heart failure, such as shortness of breath, swollen ankles, and a rapid or irregular heartbeat, worse. NSAIDs can also keep the kidneys from working well. This makes taking NSAIDs risky for people who already have kidney disease.
Which Painkillers Can You Use If You Have Heart Or Kidney Disease
There is no simple answer. The best painkiller to use depends on your health problems. It also depends on any other drugs you take. Be sure to tell your doctor about any prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, or herbal medicines you take.
Over-the-counter Tylenol is often the best choice for people with high blood pressure, heart failure, or kidney problems.
- However, high doses of Tylenol can damage the liver, so take the lowest dose you can to get enough pain relief.
- Never take more than 4,000 milligrams a day. Thats equal to twelve 325 mg pills.
If Tylenol or generic acetaminophen do not work, ask your doctor about using a stronger prescription painkiller, such as Ultram for a short time.
- If you have kidney problems, do not take more than 200 mg a day. And take it once every 12 hours to limit the risk of side effects.
- Do not use tramadol if you have epilepsy or if you take Paxil , Prozac , or Zoloft . Taking tramadol with these drugs can increase your risk of seizures.
This report is for you to use when talking with your healthcare provider. It is not a substitute for medical advice and treatment. Use of this report is at your own risk.
Read Also: Why Do You Have Kidney Stones
Areyou At Risk For Kidney Disease
Most people with kidneydisease dont have any symptoms until theyre very sick. So unless your doctorhas tested your kidney function, you cant be sure that you dont have kidneyproblems.
A few simple tests will tellyour doctor how well your kidneys are working. He or she will:
- Check your blood pressure.
- Take a blood sample and test the levels of blood urea nitrogen and creatinine, which are indicators of how well your kidneys are cleaning your blood.
- Take a urine sample to check for blood, infection or protein in your urine.
Even slightly higher thannormal blood pressure or cholesterol increases your risk for kidney disease,stresses Dr. Heyka. So keep your blood pressure, cholesterol and weight incheck, as well as your blood sugar if you have diabetes. And, as always, makesure you tell your doctor about every vitamin, herbal remedy and nutritionalsupplement you take.
Do Nsaids Cause Kidney Injury
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, are medications that help to reduce inflammation. They also control pain and fever and are available over the counter and by prescription. Common NSAIDs include ibuprofen , aspirin , and naproxen sodium . These drugs are typically safe if they are used infrequently, but for people with decreased kidney function or chronic kidney disease, they should be avoided.
Are NSAIDs safe to take?NSAIDs are typically safe to use. However, many patients are sensitive to the side effects of these medications, even with normal kidney function. If you have reduced kidney function or have a number of other medical conditions, you may be much more likely to have problems with taking these drugs.
NSAIDs can affect kidneys by several different mechanisms. They can cause high blood pressure and can also interact with some blood pressure drugs in a way that prevents them from working correctly such as diuretics, ACE inhibitors, and ARBs which are a group of drugs that are designed to relax blood vessels. NSAIDs may increase your fluid retention and can lead to decreased blood flow to kidneys. This is because NSAIDs block prostaglandins, which are the natural chemicals that dilate blood vessels and allow oxygen to reach the kidneys to keep them alive and healthy.
As the regional expert in the diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease, Ochsner offers a full range of nephrology services. Learn more here.
You May Like: Can Kidney Function Be Restored After Dialysis
What Are The Symptoms Of Analgesic Nephropathy
These are the most common symptoms of analgesic nephropathy:
- Fatigue or weakness, feeling unwell
- Blood in the urine
- Widespread swelling
- Easy bruising or bleeding
Some people have no symptoms. Kidney damage may be picked up by routine blood tests. The symptoms of analgesic nephropathy may look like other medical conditions or problems. Always talk with your healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
Stomach And Digestion Toxicity
One of the most common side effects of ibuprofen when a person takes it at recommended dosages is heartburn. When ibuprofen blocks the COX-1 receptors in the stomach, it can disrupt its protective layer.
People who take too much ibuprofen may experience side effects that range from stomach pain to severe bleeding in the digestive tract. The latter can occur within a few hours of an overdose.
Recommended Reading: Does Chronic Kidney Disease Cause Pain
Recommended Analgesic Medication Options In Ri
Pain management strategies, e.g., the World Health Organization Analgesic Ladder, have been advocated for patients with malignant pain, and increasingly utilized to assist in the management of chronic non-malignant pain. However, the utility and efficacy of the WHO Ladder in the treatment of pain among patients with end-stage renal disease has only recently been empirically evaluated in a small, prospective study of hemodialysis patients. Adjusting medication selection and dosing based upon type of pain and pain severity, it was possible to effectively reduce pain in 96% of patients.42 More extensive and longer-term investigations into the utility of the WHO Ladder in patients with RI appear warranted.
Some elements of the WHO Ladder may be inappropriate when one considers the implications of co-existing renal dysfunction in patients with multiple medical conditions. Careful attention to analgesic selection, dosing and dose titration in patients with renal impairment and end-stage renal disease can help avoid adverse drug events, which are commonly seen in these populations.
The 10 Worst Medications For Your Liver
Medications are an important cause of liver injurya scary thought considering that the liver is the main organ for maintaining the bodys internal environment and ridding it of chemical toxins and waste. Its not like the kidneys or lungs where we can use a dialysis machine or mechanical ventilator if those organs fail. For liver failure, we have no such fix.
Two thousand cases of liver failure occur each year in the United States, and half of them are due to medications. While there are more than 900 drugs and herbs reported to cause liver injury, 10 medications stand out as rare causes of liver damage.
Don’t Miss: How To Treat Kidney Disease
Kidney Impairment Can Be Costly
Although renal impairment is often reversible if the offending drug is discontinued, the condition can be costly and may require multiple interventions, including hospitalization, Dr. Naughton explained. To help you avoid getting to that point, we learned about medications that commonly cause kidney damage from Rebekah Krupski, PharmD, RPh, pharmacy resident at the Cleveland Clinic and clinical instructor of pharmacy practice at Northeast Ohio Medical University.
What Analgesics Are Safe For People Who Have Kidney Disease
Acetaminophen remains the drug of choice for occasional use in patients with kidney disease because of bleeding complications that may occur when these patients use aspirin. However, kidney patients who need to use acetaminophen habitually should be supervised by their doctors and be sure to avoid drinking alcohol while on this medicine.
Also Check: Does Drinking Alcohol Affect Your Kidneys
If I Need Pain Medicines What Can I Do To Keep My Kidneys Healthy
Kidney disease caused by pain relievers is often preventable. Here are some things you can do to help keep your kidneys healthy.
How you take these medicines makes a difference:
- Make sure you read the warning label before using any overthecounter analgesics.
- Do not use overthecounter pain relievers more than 10 days for pain or more than three days for fever. If you have pain or fever for a longer time, you should see your doctor.
- Avoid using pain medicines that contain a combination of ingredients, like aspirin, acetaminophen and caffeine mixed together in one pill.
- If you are taking pain medicines, increase the amount of fluid you drink to six to eight glasses a day.
- If you are taking pain medicines, avoid drinking alcohol.
Talking with your doctor about pain medicines can also make a difference:
- If you have kidney disease, ask your doctor before taking a pain medicine, particularly NSAIDs and higher dose aspirin.
- If you have high blood pressure or heart disease, make sure you only take NSAIDs under your doctors supervision. This is especially important if you take diuretic medications or are over 65 years of age.
- Make sure your doctor knows about all medicines you are taking, even over-the-counter medicines.
Managing Pain Without Taking Drugs
Non-drug treatments, such as yoga or massage, can often reduce or even replace the need for drugs. Here are some things you can try, depending on your kind of pain:
Back pain. Stay physically active. Walking is a good choice. Acupuncture, massage, physical therapy, and yoga can help reduce pain, too. And care from a chiropractor may help.
Headaches. Cut back on alcohol and avoid foods that trigger your headaches. This may help relieve pain. Exercise can help reduce stress that causes headaches. So can meditation, deep breathing, and other forms of relaxation therapy.
Osteoarthritis. Do low-impact exercise, such as walking, biking, and yoga. This can help ease pain and stiffness. Avoid high-impact activities, such as running or tennis. They can make your symptoms worse.
Fibromyalgia. Get regular exercise to help reduce pain and give you more energy. Tai chi a form of exercise involving slow, gentle movements combined with deep breathingis a good choice. Meditation can help with pain. So can a type of counseling called cognitive behavioral therapy.
Recommended Reading: What Causes Kidney Enzymes To Be High