Women can use aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for years without suffering renal function problems, according to data from the Nurses’ Health Study. Acetaminophen is another story, but not a markedly worse one.
Researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard University studied information from 1,697 women who responded to a questionnaire in 1999. The women’s blood samples, which were collected in 1989 and 2000, were also evaluated. The main outcome was change in estimated glomerular filtration rate over 11 years.
The researchers observed no association between lifetime use of aspirin or NSAIDs and the risk of decline in renal function, even among women who had consumed 3,000 g or more of the drug. In contrast, women who had consumed 100 g or more of acetaminophen over their lifetimes seemed to be at greater risk of losing “an important proportion” of their renal function, compared with those who had taken less than 100 g. Even so, most women who had consumed 3,000 g or more of acetaminophen did not have significant renal dysfunction, and the magnitude of the association depended on the formula used to estimate renal function. There was no apparent interaction between acetaminophen and aspirin.