Kidney Pain After Drinking Alcohol: What Could Be Causing It


In fact, IgA glomerulonephritis—acute inflammation of the kidney caused by an IgA immune response—is one of the most common types of primary glomerulonephritis worldwide (D’Amico 1987). This IgA-related kidney disease leads to clinical symptoms of renal injury and eventually progresses into renal failure (Amore et al. 1994; Bene et al. 1988; Pouria and Feehally 1999). Experimental studies suggest that heavy alcohol consumption induces IgA kidney disease (Smith et al. 1990). In addition, rats given intragastric infusions of a commercial whiskey (1.5 ml/100 gm body weight) 3 times a week along with a nutrient-deficient diet develop a more severe form of IgA nephropathy (Amore et al. 1994). The Centers for Disease Control estimates that most American adults (two out of three) drink alcohol.

  • While drinking alcohol in moderation (one or two drinks every once in a while), probably won’t harm your body, excessive alcohol consumption can have negative effects on your physical and mental health.
  • Severe alcoholic hepatitis occurs suddenly, usually after binge drinking, and it can be life-threatening.
  • This makes them less able to filter blood and maintain the correct water balance in the body.
  • They filter waste from your blood, regulate the balance of water and minerals in your body and produce hormones.

You should also note that there are an increasing number of non-alcoholic alternatives. More and more bars and restaurants carry high-quality, non-alcoholic beers, have a few mocktails on the menu, and may even serve non-alcoholic wine or spirits. Keep in mind that if you put a lime in your club soda, nobody will be any the wiser. 3For a person weighing 150 pounds, this dose would be roughly equivalent to 17 drinks.

Medical Professionals

Almost all heavy drinkers develop fatty liver, which is the earliest stage of alcohol-related liver disease. Most people with fatty liver don’t have symptoms, although they can have an enlarged liver or mild discomfort in the upper right side of the abdomen. This is a preventable disease, and it’s reversible if treated early. Moderate drinking is defined as one alcoholic beverage per day for women and two per day for men, and is generally considered safe for most healthy adults. Heavy drinking is more than three drinks per day (or seven per week) for women, and more than four drinks per day (or 14 per week) for men.

2The terms “alcoholic patient” and “alcoholism” as used in this article are summary terms for the diagnoses of alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence as defined variously by the studies cited. See a doctor or therapist if you feel you’re dependent on alcohol or if it’s interfering with your life in some way. Your doctor may prescribe kidney medication or recommend programs in your area to help you. You may wish to swap out hard liquor for beer or wine, since these have a lower alcohol content. Keep track of your drinks using an app or a diary so you can monitor your progress.

Alcohol’s Impact on Kidney Function

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 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.

How people react to the adverse effects of alcohol varies depending on age, gender, genetic background and other medical issues. Women tend to develop liver disease faster than men, despite consuming the same amount of alcohol over the same length of time. Of heavy drinkers, 10%–20% develop cirrhosis, a serious condition that usually develops after 10 or more years of drinking. Because scar tissue builds up and replaces most of the liver cells, it’s irreversible. While patients with early cirrhosis may not have any symptoms, this condition tends to progress and significantly damage the liver before it’s detected. People who consume alcohol at twice the binge drinking threshold ― that’s five or more drinks for men and four or more for women in about two hours ― are 70 times more likely to have an alcohol-related emergency department visit.

Graduate School of Addiction Studies

Further, when the body is deprived of the water usually provided by the kidneys, its sodium concentration rises. They remove all sorts of toxins and waste, including drugs from blood vessels and then send the waste off to be concentrated into alcohol and kidneys urine. They also function to balance the body’s fluids, produce Vitamin D, and use hormones to maintain your blood pressure. The events leading to abnormal sodium handling in patients with cirrhosis are complex and controversial, however.

Hangover cure: Can electrolytes really relieve symptoms the morning after drinking alcohol? – New York Post

Hangover cure: Can electrolytes really relieve symptoms the morning after drinking alcohol?.

Posted: Mon, 02 Oct 2023 19:55:00 GMT [source]

Severe alcoholic hepatitis occurs suddenly, usually after binge drinking, and it can be life-threatening. The only way to possibly prevent this hepatitis from worsening and improving life expectancy is to stop drinking. Kidneys act to filter out harmful substances, including alcohol, from your blood. Alcohol consumption causes your kidneys to be less efficient at filtering your blood.

Additional ingredients in mixed drinks may add carbohydrate that must be considered. If you’re on dialysis, drinking alcohol may be allowable, but it must be counted within your normal fluid allowance and diet, and medicines must be taken into consideration. Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a substantial public health problem, affecting 15.7 million people age 12 and older in the United States (Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality 2016).

kidneys and drinking alcohol

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