Amoxicillin and the kidneys

Patient

Q: I have one kidney and I take amoxicillin every couple months when I go to the dentist cause I have a heart shunt just in cause of infection. I was wondering if amoxicillin can cause the one kidney I have left to fail?

Doctor

A:   Amoxicillin is a ?-lactam antibiotic, and is excreted through the kidneys, therefore it can potentially cause inflammation and failure of the kidneys. There have been a few case reports of acute renal failure secondary to the administration of amoxicillin. Therefore I would advise informing your dentist of your past medical history, and the discussing with him the risks and benefits of prophylaxis during dental procedures.

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