Papers And Originals

Analgesic Nephropathy: Clinical Syndrome and Prognosis

Br Med J 1971; 1 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.1.5747.479 (Published 27 February 1971) Cite this as: Br Med J 1971;1:479

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  1. R. M. Murray,
  2. D. H. Lawson,
  3. A. L. Linton

    Abstract

    Over a five-year period 86 patients presented to a renal unit with a history of prolonged analgesic abuse and no other obvious cause of renal damage. Anaemia and peptic ulceration were common, and neurological states suggestive of chronic analgesic intoxication occurred in 22 patients. Thirty-two patients died during follow-up, but the prognosis was much better in patients who ceased abuse of compound analgesics, and improvement could occur even in advanced renal failure. While 84 patients had taken mixtures containing both aspirin and phenacetin, papillary necrosis was also found in two patients who had abused only aspirin, and when phenacetin was withdrawn from several leading compound analgesics, renal function continued to deteriorate in patients ingesting those preparations.