Assessments of kidney function and morphology of tramadol-diclofenac treated albino rats

Elias Adikwu, Ebinyo C. Nelson


Background: Tramadol-diclofenac (TD-DF) could be used in chronic pain management. Concurrent use may present renal complications due to their individual nephrotoxic profile. The present study assessed the kidney function and histology of tramadol-diclofenac treated albino rats.

Methods: Forty two adult albino rats divided into seven groups A-G were used for this study. Rats were orally administered with TD (12 mg/kg/day), DF (6 mg/kg/day), and TD-DF for 14 days including two recovery groups. Rats were weighed and sacrificed at the termination of drug treatment. Serum was extracted from blood and evaluated for creatinine (Cr), urea (U), uric acid (UA), total protein (TP), albumin (Ab) and serum electrolytes (K+, Na+, Cl-, and HCO3-). Kidneys were excised weighed and evaluated for alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) glutathione (GSH), glutathione peroxidase (GPX), malondialdehyde (MDA) levels and histological damage.

Results: The body weight, absolute and relative kidney weights and serum electrolytes were not significantly (p> 0.05) altered in the TD-DF treated rats in comparison to control. However, the levels of Cr, U, UA, AST, ALT, ALP and MDA were significantly (p<0.05) increased whereas Ab, TP, SOD, GSH, GPX and CAT were significantly (p<0.05) decreased in the TD-DF treated rats in comparison to treatments with individual doses of TD and DF. Varying degrees of histological damage were observed in the kidneys of TD-DF treated rats. However, nephrotoxic effects due to treatment with TD-DF were reversed in the recovery groups.

Conclusion: The use of tramadol-diclofenac could be associated with reversible nephrotoxicity; therefore renal function assessment is advised before tramadol-diclofenac use.

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