Lithium is the first line therapy of bipolar mood disorder. Lithium-induced nephrogenic diabetes insipidus (Li-NDI) and lithium nephropathy (Li-NP, i.e., renal insufficiency) are prevalent side effects of lithium therapy, with significant morbidity. The objective of this systematic review is to provide an overview of preventive and management strategies for Li-NDI and Li-NP. For this, the PRISMA guideline for systematic reviews was used. Papers on the prevention and/or treatment of Li-NDI or Li-NP, and (influenceable) risk factors for development of Li-NDI or Li-NP were included. We found that the amount of evidence on prevention and treatment of Li-NDI and Li-NP is scarce. To prevent Li-NDI and Li-NP we advise to use a once-daily dosing schedule, target the lowest serum lithium level that is effective and prevent lithium intoxication. We emphasize the importance of monitoring for Li-NDI and Li-NP, as early diagnosis and treatment can prevent further progression and permanent damage. Collaboration between psychiatrist, nephrologist and patients themselves is essential. In patients with Li-NDI and/or Li-NP cessation of lithium therapy and/or switch to another mood stabilizer should be considered. In patients with Li-NDI, off label therapy with amiloride can be useful.
Keywords: Chronic renal insufficiency; Lithium; Nephrogenic diabetes insipidus.
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