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Effect of alcohol consumption on kidney function: population-based cohort study Scientific Reports

It affects medicines that are used to treat high blood pressure, thus rendering them inefficient in treating the disease. High consumption of ethanol also adds up as a risk factor for kidney diseases. The human body has dozens of vital organs, and the kidneys are among the most important. They regulate water intake and outtake, they balance the amount of minerals in the body, and they produce vital hormones, according to the Kidney Foundation of Canada. Threats to the normal functioning of the kidneys are serious medical problems, and alcoholism is a contributing factor to kidney disease.

What are the first signs of kidney damage from alcohol?

First, many studies are based on patients’ routine health checkups, as annual health examinations do not allow researchers to evaluate any fluctuation in serum creatinine and other biomarkers. Moreover, many patients were excluded from the long-term observational studies because they did not attend routine annual health checkups. Although the researchers do not analyze the reasons why people are lost to follow-up, we cannot ignore the possibility that some patients were diagnosed with CKD and had begun regular medical treatment in another medical center. We also realize that previous studies did not include an adequate number of heavy drinkers, especially female heavy drinkers. Therefore, the relationship between heavy alcohol consumption and CKD may be affected by this sampling bias [16,79,117]. Substantial evidence exists to support the concept that kidney failure in hepatorenal syndrome is not related to structural damage and is instead functional in nature.


The kidneys are the body’s primary tool for filtering out dangerous substances, so issues affecting the kidneys can quickly affect the rest of the body, potentially causing problems in multiple organs. A person is at risk of different complications depending on the underlying cause of the kidney pain. The timing of the pain could be a coincidence, or the alcohol could have intensified an existing problem. However, more research is needed into the link between alcohol use and kidney injury.

Statistical analysis

  1. Though scientists agree that alcohol can play a role in the development of certain types of cancer, kidney cancer isn’t one of them.
  2. High consumption of ethanol also adds up as a risk factor for kidney diseases.
  3. Once you have CKD, it and the accompanying kidney damage cannot be reversed.
  4. With your help, we’ll bring you hard-hitting investigations, well-researched analysis and timely takes you can’t find elsewhere.

Despite the multiple possible causes of acidosis, disturbances in acid-base balance are more frequently manifested as low acidity (i.e., alkalosis). Alkalosis was present in 71 percent of patients with established liver disease in 11 studies, and respiratory alkalosis was the most common disturbance in 7 of the studies (Oster and Perez 1996). If an acute alcoholic binge induces extensive vomiting, potentially severe alkalosis may result from losses of fluid, salt, and stomach acid. A cell’s function depends not only on receiving a continuous supply of nutrients and eliminating metabolic waste products but also on the existence of stable physical and chemical conditions in the extracellular fluid1 bathing it. Among the most important substances contributing to these conditions are water, sodium, potassium, calcium, and phosphate. Loss or retention of any one of these substances can influence the body’s handling of the others.

This pain may be felt as a sudden, sharp, stabbing pain or more of a dull ache. It may be mild or severe and can be felt on one or both sides of the body. Kidneys serve as a body filter, removing the harmful substances from the system. Alcohol is one of such toxic elements and is mainly excreted through kidneys and liver – thus, these organs suffer the most. Not all forms of kidney disease are preventable, but adopting a healthful lifestyle may reduce the risk of complications, even in people with genetic kidney disorders.

Specific effects of drinking patterns have been demonstrated in a study of ischemic heart diseases [76]. This meta-analysis found a significant difference when comparing episodic heavy drinkers with moderate regular drinkers; the former increases the risk of ischemic heart diseases [115]. There is a lower risk of ischemic heart disease for moderate drinkers without heavy drinking occasions and a higher risk for drinkers with the same average amount who engaged in heavy episodic drinking [76]. Moreover, the harmful effect of episodic heavy drinking seems to be more obvious in people with light alcohol consumption, and it may be related to a rise in platelet reactivity and thrombosis after binge drinking [9]. Age, diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and smoking are traditional risk factors of cardiovascular disease in patients with CKD [15–17]. In addition, many studies have suggested that alcohol consumption can also affect the prognosis of patients with CKD.

It is important to see a doctor for any and all kidney pain, whether it is related to alcohol consumption or not. Alcohol increases the acidity of urine and can irritate the lining of the bladder. A person who drinks alcohol can become dehydrated, increasing the risk of a UTI. Alcohol may indirectly increase the risk of developing a urinary tract infection (UTI). Without treatment, a person with an acute kidney injury may have a seizure or go into a coma.

“Emphasizing non-stigmatizing language is crucial not only for fostering honesty but also for supporting the overall treatment process and patient outcomes,” Zhang said. The best thing to protect your kidneys is to regularly see your primary care provider and, if relevant, share any family history of kidney disease or dialysis, Dr. Luciano says. It may also be important to stop taking certain medicines that can worsen kidney damage, such as NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and some arthritis medicines.

Small amounts of alcohol can be easily filtered and disposed of, but too much alcohol affects how the kidneys work, impairing them to the point of not being able to properly purify the blood of the alcohol content. Alcohol is capable of undoing the kidneys’ ability to filter out toxins, and while this is not usually a problem with normal drinking, it becomes a serious problem when the drinking is abusive or excessive. Characteristics of the clinical studies on alcohol consumption and chronic kidney disease. Although hepatorenal syndrome often ensues after an event that reduces blood volume (e.g., gastrointestinal bleeding), it also can occur without any apparent precipitating factor.

Though it’s reversible with treatment, it can increase the risk of developing chronic kidney disease. Preoperative data included patients’ demographics, including age, sex, body mass index, medical history, smoking status, preoperative functional status and laboratory data. Intraoperative data included operative and anesthesia time, fluid balance, transfusion, baking soda to pass drug test single or double lung transplantation, and intraoperative extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) weaning. Immediate postoperative data included the presence of grade 3 primary graft dysfunction (PGD) within 72 h of lung transplantation, mechanical ventilation day, duration of ECMO support after lung transplantation, and length of hospital and ICU stay.

Furthermore, clinicians sometimes overlook the fact that fluids taken with medications also must be restricted for these patients and mistakenly bring pitchers of juice or water to their bedsides. Alcohol can induce abnormally high phosphate levels (i.e., hyperphosphatemia) as well as abnormally low levels. Alcohol consumption apparently leads to excessive phosphate levels by altering stimulant overdose drug overdose cdc injury center muscle cell integrity and causing the muscle cells to release phosphate. This transfer of phosphate out of muscle cells and into the bloodstream results in an increased amount of phosphate passing through the kidneys’ filtering system. In response, reabsorption of phosphate diminishes and excretion in urine increases in an effort to return blood levels of this ion to normal.

Patients with alcohol-induced liver cirrhosis show a great tendency to retain salt (i.e., sodium chloride), and their urine frequently is virtually free of sodium. A progressive accumulation of extracellular fluid results, and this excess fluid is sequestered primarily in the abdominal region, where it manifests as a review on alcohol: from the central action mechanism to chemical dependency marked swelling (i.e., ascites) (see figure). In addition, excess fluid accumulates in spaces between cells, clinically manifested as swelling (i.e., edema) of the lower back and legs. As long as cirrhotic patients remain unable to excrete sodium, they will continue to retain the sodium they consume in their diet.

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