Gabapentin and Stage 3 Kidney disease

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My 14 year old dog has been prescribed Gabapentin 200mg every 12hr for his increasing lameness due to ED and associated OA but has Stage 3 kidney disease, what is the likely impact on his kidneys? Should I approach my vet and ask about Galliprant?
Prior to his CKD diagnosis in January 2018 he was on Meloxidyl, Yumove and Arden Grange food however he has had no pain relief or anti-inflammatories until December when I tried Pardale V which doesn’t agree with him. Thank you

Answered question

Hi Stephanie, just to add to what Hannah said, yes the kidneys need to rid gabapentin out of the body – this is the normal route. However, gabapentin will not further damage the kidneys and using the lower end of the dose range should be fine as far as avoiding the drug building up in the body. Gabapentin overall is a very safe drug and the only real side effects we see are drowsiness, wobbliness and sometimes low mood. I don’t know how big your dog is to be able to say if his dose is low end or not.
The other thing you can speak to your vet about – gabapentin is quite short acting and works well given 3 times daily but this means you need to be in early afternoon to give it. It sometimes means you can give a lower overall dose (e.g 100mg three times a day instead of 200mg twice). You must speak to your vet before changing anything though as we can’t interfere with treatment. Vets don’t generally advise 3 x daily as many people can’t manage such frequent dosing.
All the best

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Kyla has kidney disease, chronic pancreatitis,  intestinal issues. She was on Onsior for years but changed to Gabapentin and Paracetamol and CBD after diagnosis of pancreatitis Autumn 2017 as vet recommended she come off nsaids.
Kidney disease was diagnosed just over a year ago March 2018 and been stable so far, next bloods done 9th April.

Answered question

hey there

  1. yes gabapentin does require the kidneys to be functional to excrete it in the urine, so dosing should bare this in mind and be initiated at the lower end and titrated up looking for effect or possible side effects such as drowsiness etc
  2. yes galliprant suggests that it should be safe on the kidneys but it is still a new drug –  I would speak to your vet and if they are unsure – as it is a very new drug to the UK – then the drug company should be able to advise
  3. have you tried paracetamol instead or pardale?
  4.  have you used cartrophen?
  5. elbow OA can be very responsive to hydrotherapy, laser, heat therapy, acupuncture, joint mobilisations with a physio, or intra articular therapy such as PRP, stem cells etc – these may be worth discussing with your vet
  6. there is growing evidence for extracorporeal shock wave therapy as well as- ask your vet

I hope that helps


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