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Medicines used in kidney disease

People with kidney disease often need to take several medicines. The commonly prescribed drugs are listed below.

Your doctor will prescribe the medicines that will work best for you. Let them know if you have any questions.

Click on each drug to read more information about it.

ACE inhibitors and ARBs (angiotensin II receptor blockers)

ACE inhibitors are used to treat high blood pressure. They help your blood vessels relax and reduce the amount of water your body retains. This helps to lower your blood pressure.

Candesartan

Enalapril

Lisinopril

Losartan

Perindopril

Quinapril

Beta blockers

Beta blockers slow down your heart rate and help your blood vessels to relax and widen. They can help to lower your blood pressure and control your heart rate.

Bisoprolol

Carvedilol

Celiprolol

Labetalol

Metoprolol

Nadolol

Pindolol

Propranolol

 

Calcium channel blockers

These medicines block calcium's effect on your blood vessels. This helps the walls of the blood vessels to relax, which makes it easier for the blood to pass through. This helps to lower your blood pressure.

Amlodipine

Diltiazem

Felodipine

Nifedipine

Verapamil

 

Water tablets (diuretics)

Diuretics increase the amount of water and salt you pass in your urine. You may have them to help control high blood pressure, which they do by decreasing the amount of water in your blood. You may also have them to prevent fluid overload, which causes symptoms such as swollen ankles or shortness of breath.

Amiloride

Amiloride and hydrochlorothiazide (Moduretic)

Bendroflumethiazide

Bumetanide

Chlortalidone

Eplerenone

Furosemide

Furosemide and amiloride

Indapamide

Metolazone

Spironolactone

 

Vasodilators

These medicines help to widen your blood vessels so the blood can flow more easily. This helps to lower your blood pressure.

Doxazosin

Isosorbide mononitrate

Prazosin

Immunosuppressants

Immunosuppressants help to stop your body rejecting a transplanted kidney. They're also used to treat some kidney diseases even without a transplant.

Antithymocyte immunoglobulin

Azathioprine

Ciclosporin

Cyclophosphamide

Mycophenolate

Rituximab

Sirolimus

Tacrolimus

Steroids

These help to relieve inflammation and treat some immune disorders.

Dexamethasone

Hydrocortisone

Methylprednisolone

Prednisone

 

 

Cholesterol-lowering

These help to lower the level of cholesterol in your blood, including LDL (low-density lipoprotein, also called bad cholesterol). This helps to reduce your risk of having a heart attack or stroke.

Atorvastatin

Bezafibrate

Ezetimibe

Pravastatin

Rosuvastatin

Simvastatin

Manage your medicines

Be aware of taking combinations of medicines that could harm your kidneys. Read The Triple Whammy – Safe use of NSAIDs for more details.

Written by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed July 2021.

Page reference: 250689

Review key: HIKID-202879