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Aspirin & Tylenol: Linked to Kidney Failure

Reference: New England Journal of Medicine, December 20, 2001;345:1801-1808

Individuals who have kidney disease or other ailments who regularly take aspirin or acetaminophen may be boosting their risk of developing kidney failure.

Researchers report that such patients who were regular users—those who took these painkillers at least twice a week for 2 months—were two to three times more likely to have the beginning stages of chronic kidney failure, compared with individuals who did not use these painkillers on a regular basis.

This study and others have found that the risk is minimal in those without pre-existing kidney disease.

Individuals who used either drug regularly were 2.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with chronic renal failure, compared with individuals who did not use these painkillers. The risk rose in tandem with the amount of either drug taken over a lifetime, the investigators found.

In looking at only participants with diabetes—a major underlying cause of kidney failure—regular aspirin and acetaminophen use were still linked to an increased risk.

The results support those of other studies that have found an association between regular use of painkillers and an increased risk of chronic kidney failure in susceptible individuals.

The results are consistent with exacerbating effects of acetaminophen and aspirin on chronic renal failure, practically regardless of accompanying disease.

OUR COMMENT

About 15% of the people on dialysis today are there as a result of the damage that Tylenol and/or aspirin did to their kidneys. In addition, about 20% of those with heart failure are also the result of taking NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), such as aspirin, Tylenol, etc. These drugs may also be associated with diverticular disease of the colon.

Pain is actually a wonderful gift—it tells us that something is wrong. Pain is a clear signal given to us to provide immediate feedback from our body so we can take appropriate action to correct the problem. To mask the pain with drugs makes about as much sense as turning off a fire alarm—so you won’t hear it—when your house is burning down. The alarm is warning you that if you don’t take action, damage is imminent.

Worldwide research now tells us that many diseases that we once thought were from genetics or poor lifestyle causes (eating junk food, etc.) are really caused from infection. If you have any type of pain, it may be important to begin the use of both immune system builders, such as whole, pesticide-free colostrum as well as natural anti-infective agents, such as olive leaf extract, hyssop, virgin coconut oil, wild yew extract and many others.

 


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