Can Kratom Use Cause Problems on Liver and Kidneys?

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Excess of everything is bad, a common proverb that we hear almost on a daily basis.

Excess of Kratom is the worst thing that could happen. Kratom, though used previously for medicinal purposes is now mainly used as a recreational substance. Due to its increasing use and less check and balance, it has caused some serious problem. Kratom is metabolized in the liver and excreted by the kidneys. Any problem with the metabolism or excretion can cause complications. Problems arise when the liver or the kidney is diseased, or Kratom causes injury to any of these vital organs of the body. A question that is often asked, can Kratom use have problems with the liver and kidneys? To find your answer, continue reading.

Role of liver in Kratom metabolism

The function of the liver is detoxification of the blood, converting the nutrients into useful forms and also metabolizing the toxic substances. It does so with the help of certain microsomal enzymes. Kratom is metabolized by the cytochrome p450 system of the liver.

If Kratom is taken in regular doses, it won’t harm the hepatocytes, however larger amounts of Kratom increases the workload load of hepatocytes, this is where the cells fell, and liver toxicity occurs. If the dose of Kratom is reduced, these liver cells start functioning properly. Kratom doesn’t cause liver cirrhosis.

Kratom abuse can cause intrahepatic cholestasis. In this liver disease, there is the abnormal release of bile. However, it is a very rare condition that occurs in Kratom users. It only happens if you have other co-morbidities like hepatitis etc.

On biopsy of the liver, it is seen that the there is a pattern of drug-induced cholestatic injury. The user usually complains of pain on the right side of the upper abdomen. The liver is enlarged and tender. Liver function tests show elevated levels of enzymes especially ALT. The person complains of dark urine, yellowing of skin, nausea, and pain.

The onset of injury is usually within 2 to 8 weeks of Kratom abuse. The user shows symptoms of fatigue, pruritus and dark urine followed by jaundice. Serum bilirubin levels may rise above 20mg/dL. It can be accompanied by acute renal failure and bone marrow toxicity. The disease can be prolonged, but it resolves spontaneously when the dose of Kratom is tapered off.

Role of kidneys in Kratom excretion

Kratom is responsible for increasing the urinary output the way coffee does. Extensive research shows that Kratom doesn’t cause injury to the renal system. It only causes acute renal failure in very rare cases when the serum bilirubin level is highly raised. According to users, they haven’t experienced any sort of kidney problem. Kidney stone formation due to Kratom intake is a myth.

How to prevent injury to liver and kidneys?

To prevent damage to any of the organs of the human body, it is necessary that Kratom does not overdose one. It should be noted that when Kratom is taken with other potentiators, the chances of getting organ injury increases. If Kratom is taken continuously, like more than once during a day and the dose is larger than 12-15 grams, then it may cause intrahepatic cholestasis. Therefore, one should keep the following things in mind when burning Kratom;

  • Avoid taking Kratom extracts.
  • Avoid overdosing on Kratom.
  • Avoid using potentiators with Kratom.
  • Drink a lot of water during the first 5 hours after burning Kratom.
  • Take healthy diet.
  • Monitor your liver function tests and renal function tests when consuming Kratom.
  • In case you have other co-morbidities like hepatitis, liver cirrhosis or liver injury, do not consume Kratom. Even if you do, make sure the dose is small.

How to treat Kratom overdose to avoid injury to liver and kidney?

To treat a Kratom overdose, no further dose of Kratom should be given. Naloxone should be provided in the case of acute Kratom overdosage. A significant amount of fluids should be given to increase the excretion of the Kratom from the system. The IV line should be saved.

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