Tag Archives: causes for kidney disease

Common Causes Kidney Disease

Common Causes of Kidney Disease

This entry is part 2 of 5 in the series Dr Joycelyn

Common Causes of Kidney Disease


Common Causes Kidney DiseaseCommon Causes of Kidney Disease. We all do it: we take over-the-counter medications to treat common health problems without thinking about the possible side effects they can give. Oftentimes, we use drugs we know to manage certain ailments without consulting a qualified health care provider.  Drugs are one of the most common causes of kidney disease and end-stage renal failure. With the US adult population getting older by the minute, it is not hard to figure out why more and more people expose themselves to therapeutic medications that can potentially harm their kidneys. In this post, we will discuss the top three drugs you may be taking that can cause potential injury to your kidneys.
Not all analgesics are created equal – some may be relatively safe for your aging kidney while others can cause renal injury, or in worse cases, acute renal failure, when used inappropriately and habitually. Aspirin and acetaminophen are two of the most common medications we use to treat mild headaches and pains. MedlinePlus states that 4 out of 100,000 individuals develop analgesic nephropathy, the damage to the kidneys resulting from overexposure to analgesics, such as aspirin and acetaminophen. If you are using 6 pills per day to treat your pains for three consecutive years, then you are at risk for developing this problem.
Diphenhydramine and doxylamine, two drugs commonly used to treat allergies, can sometimes cause rhabdomyolysis, the breakdown of skeletal muscle fibers that results in red or cola-colored urine, decreased urine output, general muscle weakness, muscle tenderness or stiffness and muscle aches. A study published by Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation says that rhabdomyolysis causes acute kidney injury in 33 to 50 percent of cases, acute kidney injury that ultimately leads to untimely dialysis.
Chinese herbals
Most people believe that herbal medicines are not harmful. However, some herbal medicines can, in fact, harm the body. According to a study published September 2008 by American Family Physician, Chinese herbal medicines that contain aristocholic acid, a carcinogenic and kidney-toxic compound, can cause chronic interstitial nephritis, a mild to severe kidney problem that causes the kidney tubules to become swollen and produce decreased amounts of urine.
Over-the-counter medications may sound harmless, but taking them too often can do you more harm than good. Consulting your physician is still the best option if you are experiencing some health problems or are concerned about Common Causes of Kidney Disease.

MedlinePlus: Analgesic Nephropathy
Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation; Acute kidney injury due to rhabdomyolysis; Lima, R.S. at al; September 2008
American Family Physician; Drug-induced Nephrotoxicity; Cynthia A. Naughton; September 2008

Dr. Jocelyn Ibanez-Pantaleon is a physician and a professional blogger. Her greatest passion is to share her knowledge about disease prevention through healthy living. Through her articles, she strives to make a difference by educating patients about chronic health problems, such as kidney diseases, hypertension and diabetes.
Dr. Jocelyn