Taking ibuprofen with some high blood pressure medications can damage the kidneys, the study says

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Patients who are prescribed a diuretic and a renin-angiotensin system (RSA) inhibitor, such as a angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE) or angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB), to control their hypertension (high blood pressure), should avoid taking ibuprofen, according to new research published in the journalMathematical Biosciences.

Diuretics and RSA inhibitors are available by prescription under a variety of pharmaceutical brands while pain relievers like ibuprofen are mostly available over the counter under different brands like Advil or Motrin.

Taking a patient’s blood pressure.
(BSIP / Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

researchers at the University of Waterloo examined the interactions of diuretics, RSA and ibuprofen using computer-simulated drug trials. Investigators found that in some patients with certain medical profiles, the combination of the three drugs could cause kidney damage, which in some cases can be permanent, according to a report. publication.

“Diuretics are a family of drugs that cause the body to retain less water,” Anita Layton, professor of applied mathematics at Waterloo and Canada 150 Research Chair in mathematics and biology, said in the release.

Nurse measuring blood pressure.

Nurse measuring blood pressure.

Layton further explained in the report: “Being dehydrated is a major factor in acute kidney injury, and so the RAS inhibitor and ibuprofen hit the kidney with this triple whammy. If you happen to take these hypertension medications and you need a pain reliever, consider acetaminophen instead. ”


The release explained that computer simulated drug trials could provide researchers with results faster than human clinical trials. Layton and his research team used math and computer science to give doctors “an edge over problems like drug complications,” the release said.

Layton noted in the release, “It’s not like everyone taking this drug combination will have any problems,” and added, “But research shows it’s a problem enough that you should be careful.”

Advil brand ibuprofen tablets are displayed for a photograph in Tiskilwa, Illinois, USA on Wednesday, Oct.18 23, 2019.

Advil brand ibuprofen tablets are displayed for a photograph in Tiskilwa, Illinois, USA on Wednesday, Oct.18 23, 2019.
(Daniel Acker / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The study stated that triple drug therapy, known as triple whammy, was associated with a 31% increased risk of acute kidney injury, compared with patients treated with diuretics and ACE inhibitors / ARBs alone. The published report also stated that triple stroke acute kidney injury (AKI) occurs in 0.88% -22% of patients with triple treatment.


“Our simulation results reveal a key role of the myogenic response in determining AKI risk,” said the study authors in the published report. The myogenic response is the mechanism by which the diameter of the blood vessel shrinks after an increase in pressure and increases in diameter after a decrease in this pressure to maintain proper blood flow, experts to explain.

“We hypothesize that individuals with impaired myogenic response may be particularly susceptible to triple whammy AKI. Additionally, increased drug sensitivity or low water intake may predispose patients to triple whammy AKI,” the researchers wrote in their study. .


Health experts told Fox News it’s important for anyone taking medication to consult their doctor or pharmacist before taking an over-the-counter drug or supplement to avoid drug interactions.