24th June, 2013
As acute kidney failure ravages the world and especially third world countries including Nigeria, various medical research sites on the internet have revealed that aspirin and ibuprofen are two major causes of the disease.
These two drugs are very effective pain killers found in many chemists and drug stores across the country.
According to researchers, they contain substances that inhibit the effective working conditions of the kidneys.
WebMD (www.webmd.com), a popular international health service and information provider, reveals that other examples of medicines that can sometimes harm the kidneys include antibiotics, such as gentamicin and streptomycin, some anti-blood pressure medicines, such as ACE inhibitors and dyes used in some X-ray tests.
Other causes include: sudden, serious drop in blood flow to the kidneys, heavy blood loss, injury, or sepsis, a bad infection that can reduce blood flow to the kidneys.
Lack of enough fluid in the body (dehydration) also can harm the kidneys.
“Most people don’t have any kidney problems from taking medicines. But people who have serious, long-term health problems are more likely than other people to have a kidney problem from medicines.
“A sudden blockage that stops urine from flowing out of the kidneys. Kidney stones, a tumour, an injury, or an enlarged prostate gland can cause a blockage,” WebMD says, adding that the problem is also age-related and could occur for people suffering from kidney or liver disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart failure, or obesity.
Mayo Clinic, an international health institution, confirms that the use of aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, or related drugs have high negative impact on the functionality of the kidneys.
According to the clinic, other factors include heredity, conditions that slows blood flow to your kidneys, direct damage to your kidneys, and impaired blood flow to the kidneys.
Other causes, according to Mayo Clinic, are severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis), severe dehydration, blood clots in the veins and arteries in and around the kidneys, cholesterol deposits that block blood flow in the kidneys, inflammation of the tiny filters in the kidneys (glomeruli) and some infections.
The health institutions list some of the symptoms of acute renal failure to include little or no urine when one urinates, swelling, especially in the legs and feet, not feeling like eating, nausea and vomiting, feeling confused, anxious and restless, or sleepy, pain in the back just below the rib cage.
However, not every victim of the disease experience these symptoms that also occur in other diseases as health researchers say renal failure can only be diagnosed in hospitals.
“Acute renal failure is most often diagnosed during a hospital stay for another cause. If you are already in the hospital, tests done for other problems may find your kidney failure.
“If you’re not in the hospital but have symptoms of kidney failure, your doctor will ask about your symptoms, what medicines you take, and what tests you have had. Your symptoms can help point to the cause of your kidney problem,” WebMD says.
Where it is detected, the doctor or a kidney specialist (nephrologist) is expected to treat the problem that is causing your kidneys to fail.
“Treatment can vary widely, depending on the cause. For example, your doctor may need to restore blood flow to the kidneys, stop any medicines that may be causing the problem, or remove or bypass a blockage in the urinary tract,” it says, adding that where the kidney has completely packed up, a replacement through surgery is necessary.