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How does long-term lithium therapy effect the kidneys?

Responses (2)

Anonymous 2 Mar 2013

Hello kaleneill. Not certain. I will do some reading up and if I find an answer, will add it below as a comment. Regards pledge

suzanne66 4 Mar 2013

The most common effect that lithium has on the kidneys is to impair the ability to make a concentrated urine. A person taking lithium tends to produce larger than normal amounts of dilute urine, and as a result also has to drink more water in order to keep up with the water lost through the kidneys. This effect of lithium does not damage the kidneys, but does result in more urination, more thirst, and more fluid intake than normal.

Carefully-monitored use of lithium usually causes no damage to the kidneys. However, there is a risk of kidney damage, especially:

1) when lithium has been used for a number of years,
2) when blood lithium levels are high, or
3) when lithium use is combined with other conditions that may result in decreased kidney function, including:
Diabetes
Smoking
High cholesterol
Medications - including ACE inhibitors or NSAIDs
Family history of kidney disease

http://www.healthhype.com/lithium-induced-kidney-disease-nephropathy.html

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