Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Announcements

Visit our Crisis Assistance Link for resources. For immediate help, get to the ER.

*No Dr Outside Contact Please*
Includes Expert Content
Dr. G - kidney function
avatar
ddnos posted:
Hi Dr. G.

I understand that you would need my history and medical information to give a definitive answer, but without that info, would it be pretty safe to say that slowly decreasing kidney functioning in me would likely be because of the lithium that I have been on for about 22 years? My lithium levels have been consistently .7 to .8 and the majority of those 22 years, I have been on 750mg of lithium.

And, if it turns out that lithium is the cause, would I need to stop taking lithium and onto another mood stabilizer, or would that depend on how fast (or slow) the kidney functioning was decreasing?

Thank you!
Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
Reply
 
avatar
ddnos responded:
bump
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
 
avatar
Joseph F Goldberg, MD responded:
Dear Debbie,

The critical number would be your creatinine, which is a measure of kidney function. If it creeps up by about 25% or more I typically send patients to get a 24 hour urine collection in order to measure something called their creatinine clearance, which is the most sensitive measure of kidney function. If age-adjusted creatinine clearance is low I typically monitor it more closely and if significantly low then it may become necessary to lower lithium dosages or even stop lithium altogether depending on the creatinine clearance.

Lithium levels don't convey any information about kidney function.

Dr. G.
 
avatar
ddnos replied to Joseph F Goldberg, MD's response:
Thank you Dr. G!

When you said, "if it creeps up by about 25% or more...." Twenty-five percent of what? My creatinine last was 1.18...so do you mean 25% increase from test to test?

Thank you!
Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown
 
avatar
Joseph F Goldberg, MD replied to ddnos's response:
Debbie,

If creatinine increases by about 25% or more from the usual baseline value...so if your usual creatinine is 1.2 (ie, normal), one might get concerned if it rose to 1.5 or higher on a semi-annual check and then do the more involved testing I described.

Dr. G.
 
avatar
ddnos replied to Joseph F Goldberg, MD's response:
Ok, thank you Dr. G.

Debbie
Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past could have been any different --Unknown


Featuring Experts

Joseph F. Goldberg, MD, is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY. He also maintains a private prac...More

Helpful Tips

NSAIDS and lithiumExpert
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (eg, Motrin/ibuprofen, Advil, Naprosyn) raise lithium levels by about 20%. We often therefore say ... More
Was this Helpful?
69 of 92 found this helpful

Related News

There was an error with this newsfeed

Related Drug Reviews

  • Drug Name User Reviews

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.