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Common anti-fever medications pose kidney injury risk for children
Date:1/24/2013

tted to the hospital. Because many of the 1,015 cases involved multiple potential causes of acute kidney injury, the researchers said the 27 cases are likely an underestimate of the number of cases in which NSAIDs contributed to the kidney damage.

Among the researchers' findings:

  • Most of the children had been treated with recommended dosages.
  • All of the children under the age of 5 needed to undergo dialysis temporarily, were more likely than the older children to be placed in an intensive care unit and needed longer hospital stays.
  • The average cost for hospital and kidney specialist fees in the 27 cases was nearly $13,500, and the costs were much higher for younger children. At least $375,000 was spent on the NSAID-associated kidney injury cases at Riley Hospital over the study period, the researchers said, but billing data for other specialists were not available in the database, suggesting that the actual costs were likely much higher.

NSAIDs affect kidney function by restricting blood flow to the blood-filtering components of the kidneys, which suggests the risks from the drugs are greater among children who are dehydrated due to the effects of their illness, such as vomiting or diarrhea, Dr. Misurac said.

Fever is normal during an infection and not in itself dangerous, he noted, so "one alternative to NSAIDs would be acetaminophen, but another alternative would be no medication at all, at least for a while, to let the body fight the infection."


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Contact: Eric Schoch
eschoch@iu.edu
317-274-8205
Indiana University
Source:Eurekalert

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